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Something Old, Something New: Shortbread Recipe

Baking ingredients

In the mood for some sweets? Check out Tamar Adler’s shortbread recipe from SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW. It’s a great treat to whip up for your friends and family!

I used to hold the puritanical view that the best thing to end a meal with was a memory of what was eaten and drunk. I have also always supported a decanter of scotch, which rounds things out with the grace of a tapering candle. 

But I find, to my happiness, that I will serve old-fashioned desserts. There is in them much steeping in cream, chilling and jelling, sweetening of egg yolks, whipping of egg whites. The results are soft puddings, custards, sponge cakes layered with cream put to chill.

And here is a shortbread recipe for easy and slightly savory cookies that gesture to the nineteenth-century habit of “savouries,” or may simply be treated as timeless, for they are simple butter cookies, and sometimes needed in any age. It is adapted from Melissa Clark’s.

Shortbread Recipe


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2⁄3 cupsugar
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch chunks


Heat the oven to 325 degrees. In a food processor, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the butter and pulse to fine crumbs. Pulse a few more times until some crumbs start to come together, then stop. The dough should not be smooth.

Press the dough into an ungreased 8- or 9-inch square baking pan or a 9-inch pie pan. Prick all over with a fork. Bake until golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes for a 9-inch pan, 55 to 60 minutes for an 8-inch one. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Cut into squares, bars, or wedges while still warm.

For more classic recipes revisited, pick up SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW!

For more on Tips on Life and Love: Air Fryer Recipes: Crispy Brussels Sprouts


Excerpted from Something Old, Something New by Tamar Adler. Copyright © 2018 by the author. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.


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