Up to the Challenge…

So I got an email from the people of Challenge Dairy. In the email they wrote, “after reading your blog I noticed that you like to cook with unsalted butter”…ha, ha, you could say that again. I certainly could give Paula Deen and her love of butter a run for her money (or maybe should could just give me her money ;) ).
They also asked if I wanted some free coupons for some unsalted butter. Um…YES! Along with some coupons I got nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla from Spice Islands and a whisk from OXO. See they are having a contest. If you win the grand prize you get a 7 day/6 night trip for 4 people to the incredible Mountain Sky Guest Ranch (mtnsky.com) in Montana’s Paradise Valley, just North of Yellowstone National Park. That sounds pretty awesome to me! Especially since it includes airfare, food, and accommodations! If you don’t win that you could win the other prize which is from Spice Islands and OXO. A prize package worth $850. The contest ends December 31st, 2009. The drawing is in the first part of January 2010…wouldn’t that be a great way to start the new year! There seems to be some confusion in the comments. I am not entering the contest. It’s not a baking contest. I am just telling You about it, so that You have the chance to win.

If you don’t live out West you might not be all that familiar with Challenge Butter. I know them as the people with the Elk on the box. I guess you could be known for worst things. ;) I mainly use their European style butter (mmm 83% butterfat), but their unsalted is good quality as well.

Since I was sitting there with butter, nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla, I figured I would make something that highlighted the butter but also used the spices that were sent to me. And so we return to my old friend the Snickerdoodle. But of course, as always, I put a twist on it. What better to showcase butter than shortbread. And so I came up with Snickerdoodle Shortbread. Yes, I’m evil. Yes, it will make you fat. There are 3 sticks of butter in this baby. Yes, it’s worth it. :P

So if you live out here in the Wild (or Mild if you live at my household) West be sure to look for the Elk on the box and pick up some Challenge butter for your holiday baking.

Speaking of contests, don’t forget I’ll be giving away some mini loaf pans. You have until Friday at noon (my time…that’s PST) to enter. Good luck.

Snickerdoodle Shortbread

3/4 cup granulated sugar
¼  cup powdered sugar
1 ½  cups unsalted butter, at room temperature (3 sticks!)
½ tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ¼  cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup white rice flour
1 TBSP Cream of Tartar
1 tsp salt

1 cup cinnamon sugar, divided

Preheat oven to 350F.
Butter a 9-x-13-inch baking pan. Take ½ of the cinnamon sugar and sprinkle it around the pan making sure to cover both the bottom and sides of the pan. Set aside.

In a standard mixer (or with a hand-held beater), cream together the butter and the sugars until light and fluffy on medium-high speed, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat an additional 30 seconds.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flours, Cream of Tartar, nutmeg, and salt.

Turn the mixer speed to low and add  flour mixture and combine until it starts to come together. You still want it to be a little on the crumbly side. Not to worry, as it bakes it will form together nicely. Place dough into the pan and break up any large clumps, spreading evenly. Press dough down gently and sprinkle the remaining cinnamon sugar on top.
With a rinking glass, roll out the dough evenly. Or you can press down with a greased spatula.

Prick dough with fork to help the shortbread rise evenly.

Bake for 22-25 minutes or until it turns golden brown (which is a little hard to tell with the cinnamon on there ;) ).

Remove from oven and while warm either cut into squares or use a round cookie cutter. Remove when cool.


  1. What is the role of cream of tartar in your shortbread recipe? This is the first I have seen a shortbreat cookies recipe with cream of tartar in it. Thanks.

  2. Snickerdoodle shortbread????? Shut. Up. Where has this been my whole life?

  3. Question I forgot – the white rice flour? What does that do in the recipe and how hard is it to find? I don’t recall seeing it, but I’m wondering if I’m just not looking in the right place at the store. Thanks!

  4. Wow, amazing. What a great idea. I will have to add this to my collection of snickerdoodle treats, its my hubby’s favorite.

  5. I love shortbread, and this version looks wonderful. Glad to hear you have a favorable opinion of Challenge butter. I recently found it at my grocery store and bought some to try. It seems to be pretty good. And even better, I discovered today that it’s really on sale, so I bought a bunch for the freezer. =)

  6. I just made these for my boyfriend for Valentine’s day but I added chocolate chips. They are in the oven right now! The dough is amazing :)

    For anyone planning on making these, I thought a cup of cinnamon sugar was way more than I needed. I think half would do.
    I didn’t use cream of tarter, rice flour, nutmeg since I am a college student with limited ingredients. I’ll let you know how they turn out :)

  7. They are amazing!!

  8. I wonder if I’m too late to be read but I could use a little help with these.

    First of all, I must say this in the BEST shortbread I’ve ever made. It was tasty and so wonderfully tender. I am guessing that’s the effect of the white rice flour but, whatever should be credited, they had none of the gluten formation I usually get before I get the dry ingredients integrated. Hooray!

    I must say, though, that mine were far from that attractive. By the time I dusted the top and bottom with the cinnamon sugar and baked it, they had gone all clumpy. It tasted great and thoroughly snickerdoodley but looked more like the sodden coating of buttered cinnamon toast.

    What could I do to get the more delicate look of the cookies in the photo illustrations above?

    PS Looking forward to adapting this to lemon sugar and ginger sugar variations. It really will become my go-to shortbread method.

  9. @rainey- not really sure what is causing that. Personally I believe if they taste great that is all that matters.

Speak Your Mind


Log In