I took some really beautiful pictures of this recipe that you will never see because my camera has EATEN them. To compensate (a little) I did take a few shots of the finished product, so let’s get right to that, because Jamie Oliver was not exaggerating when he named these the best in the World. This is ridiculously good, buttery, crumbly, addictive, flaky, tender, easy-to-make shortbread.
I don’t mean to be bossy or anything, but you really must try these. When you make them, use the highest quality butter that you can get your hands on, since it is the key ingredient. I also recommend using semolina instead of cornstarch (JO give you the option of using one or the other). The semolina lends a bit of a grainy texture to the shortbread and makes it more crumbly.
Oh man, I wish you could have seen the pictures I took of this shortbread before my camera destroyed them forever. I also wish you could taste it. Let’s just say, I didn’t send as many pieces off with Brian this morning as I could have. I’ll be making this again soon!
The Best Shortbread In the World
Perfect as intended by Jamie Oliver in Cook with Jamie: My Guide to Making You a Better Cook
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon superfine sugar (powdered sugar)
2 scant cups all-purpose flour, sifted, plus extra for dusting
2/3 cup semolina or 1 scant cup cornstarch
(blogger note: for the “scant cups”, use just a bit less than the full amount, such as a leveled cup minus a few tablespoons)
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Butter a 9 inch square pan. Cream butter and sugar together with a whisk or wooden spoon until pale, light, and fluffy. Add the flour and semolina or cornstarch. Mix very lightly with a wooden spoon and then with your hands until you have a smooth dough.
Transfer the dough to a floured surface and roll it out until it’s and even 1 inch thick all over. Pressed the rolled-out dough into your pan, poking it into the corners with your fingers – don’t worry about it having to look perfect. Prick the dough all over with a fork and bake in the preheated oven until slightly golden – about 50 minutes.
While it’s still warm, sprinkle with a generous dusting of sugar. Allow the shortbread to cool slightly, then cut into chunky fingers.