Homemade shortbread is something different from the dry, crumbly stuff that you can buy in the store. Eaten warm out of the oven, the shortbread is dense but slightly sticky to the bite. Here I have replaced the regular sugar with brown sugar, which gives the cookie a caramel flavor. A dusting of cinnamon on the top adds intrigue without taking away from the main event.
16 tablespoons (225 grams) butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar or demarra sugar
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Pre-heat the oven to 325F (160C) degrees. Butter a 9-inch spring-form pan.
In a bowl, beat the butter at medium speed until light, fluffy and pale yellow, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the brown sugar and mix on a medium speed until combined and fluffy, about a minute. Add the flour and salt and mix on a low speed until incorporated.
Scrape the mixture into the prepared springform pan and smooth the mixture with the back of a spoon into the bottom of the ban, making sure that it is tucked neatly on the edges of the pan and that it is smooth and even. You can use the bottom of a glass or ramekin to press the dough down and smooth it out.
Combine granulated sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and then sprinkle evenly over the top of the shortbread. Using a knife, score the shortbread into 12 wedges.
Place the pan onto a baking sheet, to contain any excess butter that may drip while the shortbread is cooking, and bake until the shortbread is golden brown and firm at the edges, but slightly soft in the center, about 55 to 60 minutes. Take out of the oven and remove the sides of the spring-form pan. Let the shortbread cool for 10 minutes and then slide onto a cutting board and cut into wedges based on the existing lines. Let cool.