Solstice Shortbread

The best choice for perfecting one’s cookie dunking technique has got to be the Lorna Doone. The modifier “shortbread cookie” would be redundant there, wouldn’t it? Does Lorna make anything but? A short wide-mouth glass of ice-cold milk and a tall tower of those little squares in all their enriched flour and simulated butter-flavored sandiness challenge your ability to pull out before the dreaded premature oversaturation sends all but the wee top left corner between your thumb and forefinger to a milky grave, which is why it’s imperative to have a spoon at the ready for they tend to self-destruct within seconds of their descent.
Cravings for yet another of my favorite processed prepared foods with a shelf life just short of forever – although that box rarely occupied its designated space longer than half a fortnight – needed to be fulfilled with a rich organic substitute.  A preconceived notion manifested itself somewhere along the line to healthier eating habits that homemade Doones would more probably than not result in something more akin to a desert dune; thus, I never attempted.  And then I became enamored with those decorative kiln-fired shortbread molds “impressed” with vining hearts and flowers and old-fashioned country motifs.  But they were a bit pricey and I certainly  didn’t need another gadgety bulk of bakeware, a fragile one at that. That’s not to say I  failed to drop hints around obligatory “they gotta get me a gift” occasions sponsored by Hallmark and the fact that I was a wife and a mother and born on a certain day.
Cruising the web about a year ago for some light reading about the winter solstice, I eventually weaved my way over to one of my favorite sites, KAF, and it was here that I stumbled upon this recipe that I’d stash away until I broke down and bought myself one of those silly little molds.  
And then there’s Mo…
Maureen a/k/a “Mo” came into my life via a CompuServe Forum circa 1992 and has been like the “chicken soup of my soul” ever since.  If I were to compose a novel, it would probably be based on the life story of my father (1916-1975); if a book, that would definitely be  Mo’s life story.  In the meantime, I’ll just have to settle for making her shortbread in the heart-shaped gift she bought me last month. So, a wife, a mother, born on a certain day… and a friend of Mo’s.
Never much cared for the perfume-like taste of ginger, but the raw stuff is so good for you.  I had this bag of candied ginger chunks getting stale in the cupboard, which is another reason I decided on this particular recipe.  I used a little more than half of what the recipe called for.  It was processed into the flour like so, and the flavor in the cookies turned out to be pleasantly subtle.


a handy makeshift rolling pin that “fit the mold”

Next time I’ll press the dough deeper into the mold so the design is more “impressive”

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