But I finished the last kouign amman and looked around for something to make. There are a number of cookbooks in our kitchen, and I selected Betty Crocker's Cooky Book (1963).
- 1 cup butter (I do 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup shortening as a matter of course, so you get the good butteryness but can feel like you're doing a good thing because of the shortening)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar (I used dark)
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- chocolate chips
When you beat the butter/sugar/egg/vanilla together, it looks like ordinary cookie dough wet ingredients, but when you add the flour and sugar it becomes very dry and crumbly. (Still tasty, though. I probably ate a full cookie square of this before baking.) And a thing you may have noticed about this recipe is that there's no rising agent. This is because it's basically shortbread with brown sugar instead of white.
Instead of being a deliciously thick batter, it's a slightly unappetizingly dry powder. But once you press it into a greased 13x9 pan, it gets better. And once you bake it at 350 degrees ("moderate", according to the book, which I think is aimed partly at an audience used to measuring oven heat via testing with a hand)) for 25-30 minutes, the butter melts and it's shortbread.
While it's still hot, sprinkle chocolate chips or bits of chocolate bars on top and let it stand. Give it a few minutes to let the chocolate melt, then spread it around. Once it cools, or mostly cools anyway, cut the cookies into squares.
... That napkin didn't look so crumby to me when I took the picture, but I'd already eaten one because they're irresistible.
At first I thought these might do better with light brown sugar as they tasted a bit molassesy - I'm not a big fan of molasses - but after eating several by now it's grown on me. Brown sugar shortbread! It's delicious!