City Bakery Shortbread Cookies

1 cupgranulated sugar
2 cups (4 sticks) plus 2 teaspoonsunsalted butter, at room temperature
4 1/2 cupsunbleached all-purpose flour, sifted
colored sugars or other decoratifs (optional)

Instructions

This recipe, created for us by Maury Rubin, proprietor of the renowned City Bakery in New York, makes rich and buttery cookies that are fun to make into shapes and decorate.

Put the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attached. Mix on low speed until butter softens slightly. With the mixer running, add the sugar to the butter with a slow, constant pouring motion.

Stop the mixer and add half of the flour. Mix on low speed until flour is partly incorporated. Stop mixing and add the remaining flour. Mix on slow speed until flour is just combined into the butter. Do not over mix.

Remove the dough from the bowl and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 2 hours. Shape dough into cylindrical log, if desired, before chilling.

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Line cookie baking sheets with parchment paper. On a cutting lightly floured work surface, roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness, and cut out shapes with cookie cutters. If you have previously rolled the dough into a log, slice into disks.

Place the cookies on the baking sheets, sprinkle with colored sugar or decoratifs, if desired, and bake until lightly golden, about 12 minutes. Allow cookies to cool slightly, and then transfer to racks to cool completely. Store cookies in an airtight container.

Makes around 24 cookies.

Maury Rubin, City Bakery, New York City

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