You’d be wise to assume that my house is swimming in desserts. I’ve always got a few laying around. So, every now and then, I go on a mission to give away all the desserts. And before I make a new dessert, I often find a victim to give it away to before the oven is even preheated. It keeps me accountable. It also keeps the calories in check.
I find my victim and commit to them via the almighty and ever-binding text message that I will deliver a dessert to their house by 5pm. But sometimes, I mess up. Sometimes I taste-test something and then discover that I don’t want to give it away. It’s so good. Too good. That’s how I felt with my honey shortbread. I stole one cookie out of the batch for taste-testing, and it wasn’t enough. I was blown away by their deep, toasty flavor that reminded me of graham crackers. But, I made a commitment. I (reluctantly) passed them off.
I haven’t stopped thinking about them. I wanted another batch. I needed another batch. But I also wanted to give you a variation on the recipe so you can make and enjoy both. I halved the recipe to make 12 shortbread bites. And then I did what every human being is doing right now, and filled my grocery cart with strawberries because Spring is finally here!
So, what we’re working with here is a shortbread cookie, a dollop of whipped cream, a few bites of strawberry and a gratuitous sprinkling of lemon zest on top.
Don’t give these away. Not even one.
For the cookies:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
For the topping:
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- handful of fresh strawberries
- fresh lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, add the butter. Please ensure that the butter is softened, not all the way at room temperature. Softened butter will hold a fingerprint, but still feel cool to the touch.
- Add the powdered sugar, honey, vanilla extract and salt to the butter, and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until well-combined and creamy.
- Add the flour and beat until combined.
- Flour a surface and add the dough on top. Flour the rolling pin, and begin to roll out the cookies to 1/4" thickness. You want an even, uniform thickness so they cook at the same time.
- Using a tiny 2" biscuit cutter, cut out as many circles as you can. Re-roll the scraps to get a total of 12 cookies.
- Bake for 10 minutes, or until edges are starting to turn golden. Don't underbake--the golden edges are the best part.
- Let the cookies cool completely.
- Meanwhile, slice the strawberries.
- Whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form, and then add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat again.
- Top each cookie with a dollop of heavy cream, a few slices of strawberry, and a sprinkling of lemon zest.