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Almond Shortbread Cookies with Cranberries and Orange

Blog photo showing Overhead close-up of Almond Shortbread cookie with pieces of fresh cranberry and orange zest

Tender, Buttery shortbread cookies, flavored with almond, orange zest and fresh cranberries! These are easy to make, and perfect for the Winter Holidays (or any time of year, really)! 

Be sure to start with room temperature butter!

Recipe inspired by and adapted from The View from Great Island

  • Author: Laura
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes, plus chilling time
  • Yield: 36 cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: International

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup (227g, 2 sticks) Unsalted Butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes 
  • 1/2 cup (100g) Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt (Omit if using Salted Butter)
  • 1 Tbsp Freshly Grated Orange Zest
  • 1 tsp (5ml) Almond Extract
  • 2 cups (240g) All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup Fresh Cranberries, chopped

Instructions

  1. At Medium Speed in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer, beat room temperature butter, sugar, salt and orange zest until nicely combined, about 2-3 minutes. Add the almond extract and mix an additional 15-30 seconds to incorporate.
  2. Turn speed down to Medium-Low and add the flour, beating until you can see no streaks of flour, a minute or 2. Shorter time keeps the cookies tender. Then mix in chopped cranberries.

Form dough into a log and refrigerate

  1. Onto a sheet of wax paper or plastic wrap, dump the dough. Form the dough with your hands into a long, log shape. Wrap the plastic around the shape, then, using your hands and the plastic, shape into an oblong cube (plank) or a round log. I made mine 12″ long. You can make it as long as you want, but decide on the size of cookies you want. They do not really spread much in the oven, so a shorter log or plank will yield larger cookies, and longer, like mine, will yield smaller cookies. The square shape is easier to maintain in the fridge and while cutting. 
  2. Place shaped dough log or plank in the refrigerator at least 2 hours and up to 2 days.

Bake

  1. When you are ready to bake, preheat oven to 325F (Conventional oven) or 310F for Convection/Fan oven. Butter or parchment-line 2 baking sheets.
  2. When oven is preheated, remove the log or plank from the refrigerator, unwrap, and slice into cookies, somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2″ thick. I make mine about 1/3″ thick.
  3. Place on the baking sheets and bake 12-15 minutes, until set and just beginning to brown on the edges. If you prefer softer cookies, take them out closer to the minimum time. A longer bake will make crispier cookie. I took mine out right in the middle, about 13-14 minutes.
  4. When done, remove from oven and cool 2-3 minutes on the sheet before placing them on a rack to cool completely. (See Note 1)

Notes

  1. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-5 days, or in the refrigerator up to 7-10 days. A better option is to wrap tightly and keep in the freezer until a few hours before serving.

Nutrition

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