I spotted the lovely Homestead font on Jenny’s Font Friday column on Hank & Hunt a few months ago, and immediately wanted to grab a mug of luscious hot chocolate and curl up in a warm, toasty blanket! It looks sturdy and old-fashioned and plaid-ish, and brings to mind manly lumber jacks and snowy evergreen forests. I wanted to make shortbread cookies flavored with maple syrup to go with this gorgeous font, but liquids are the enemy of shortbread; adding a liquid like honey or maple syrup to otherwise crispy, crunchy shortbread will make them soft and chewy. Luckily, you can add maple flavor to sweet treats without adding any syrup thanks to maple sugar! Everyone who’s eaten these shortbread cookies so far has raved. And then gone back for seconds!
3 sticks butter (1 1/2 cups), at room temperature
1/2 cup maple sugar (I got mine from Trader Joe’s)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon maple flavoring
3 1/2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugars until just combined. Add vanilla and maple flavoring, and mix. In a separate bowl, sift together flour and salt, then add to butter mixture. Mix on low just until dough comes together. Dump dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill 30 minutes. Roll dough to a thickness of 1/2 inch and cut into individual cookies. I used a 2-3″ maple leaf-shaped cookie cutter, but any 2-3″ cookie cutter would work. Place cookies on an ungreased baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 18 minutes, until the edges just begin to turn golden. Remove from oven and cool before serving.
About the author: Melissa writes about her adventures in food, family, and farming at Lulu the Baker. She develops recipes, cooks, and photographs for The Font Feast column.