If you’re looking for a dessert to serve on St. Patrick’s Day, a day that honors the patron saint of Ireland who was born in Scotland, shortbread would a good choice. Although shortbread is most often thought of as a food originating in Scotland, shortbread has actually been a baking staple over the whole of the British Isles for centuries, including Ireland. Early versions started out as dry, hard rusk-like “biscuits” that evolved, over time, into luxurious, butter-rich treats once reserved for only celebratory occasions. The “short” in the word “shortbread” refers to the high amount of butter-to-flour there is in the dough – a clue that the finished product will be rich, crumbly and tender. Shortbread, the pinnacle of “short” dough pastries is divine in its simplicity and, as any shortbread fan will tell you – all about the butter. Since shortbread contains minimal ingredients, you’ll want to use the best of the best, including premium butter, such as Kerrygold’s Pure Irish Butter. Kerrygold’s recipe for “Butter Shortbread Petticoat Tails” is spectacular, as is the color of Kerrygold’s all–natural golden-hued Pure Irish Butter, a result of the beta carotene-rich grass-fed cow’s milk it contains. You will want to bake shortbread at a low temperature to be sure it doesn’t overbrown. It should look almost white to a light golden brown after baking, whether baked as a stamped cookie, in a square pan or fashioned into petticoat tails. If you don’t eat (or gift) all your shortbread, it will keep in an airtight container, for up to one week.
Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.