the heart of my Christmas baking – shortbread cookies

My Mom was a great cook – never anything fancy, but everything she made was made with fat love which made it all extra delicious.

Macaroni and cheese, bread pudding, perogies and pancakes.

And she would go baking-crazy at Christmas – maple fudge, Chex mix, rosettes, butter tarts and shortbread cookies.

My Mom made the very best shortbread cookies.

The absolute very best.

And since she died, I have been trying to recreate her shortbread recipe.

With not very good results.

But then last year, I was reading a local food blog and Chris wrote about his Mom’s shortbread cookie recipe.  Still on the search for that perfect shortbread cookie, I thought I would give it a try.

It was good.  It was probably the closest I have gotten to my Mom’s recipe, but it still seemed not-quite-right, so I fiddled with it and made another batch and they were more than not-quite right so I gave up for the year.

But this year, I had an epiphany…everything my Mom made was the most basic, simple recipe there was, and I was pretty sure that her shortbread recipe came from…the back of the Canada Cornstarch box*!

So I Googled that recipe and everything clicked.

This was it.

I also noticed that it is exactly the same as Chris’s recipe (only halved) – so I gave it another try.**  I was so confident that these were “the ones” that I made 8 dozen of them before even tasting one!

Then, even though just one of those butter-laden cookies would cause me a night of gallbladder pain, I tried one.

And I am VERY happy with the results.

*from, like, way back in the 70’s

**I’m not sure what I did wrong last year, but I must have messed up even that simple recipe, because the exact same recipe is exactly right this year