Slightly sweet, buttery shortbread cookies are studded with Butter Pecan M&Ms candies. Perfect for dunking in cocoa, coffee, hot tea, or hot cider!
I am loving the weather we’re having this year. Not to jinx things, but it’s into November, and we’re still in the 50s-60s as far as temperatures go. And so far, there’s no mention of s-n-o-w. It’s still typical fall weather, though. Grey and gloomy, and that doesn’t help my SAD at all. Still, as long as my winter-induced claustrophobia doesn’t kick in any time soon, I’ll manage.
I’m feeling more like baking these days, which is an easy way to heat up the house without turning on the furnace. It’s also therapeutic. I used to joke when I worked at the bank that it’s cheaper (and tastier!) than therapy. Since I struggle with feeling closed off from everything every winter (one of the perils of living in a rural area–Something I’m still not used to even after twelve years of living in South Dakota), baking is a way to shut out the inevitable piles of snow that will be coming and keeping myself occupied instead of climbing the walls.
It’s funny–When I was unemployed for not-quite two months last year, I didn’t go bonkers with being stuck at home all day, every day. I don’t know if it was because I wasn’t forced to drag myself off to a job I no longer liked, or that I just had to pull up my big-girl britches and keep myself from losing it so the rest of the family didn’t lose it. We ate well for those 6-7 weeks, that’s for sure. Now that I’m down to just part-time work, I have much more time to cook and bake, which will be nice this season, especially in time for all the holidays. And my current employer is not tied to government regulatory bodies like the FDIC, which means I get actual time off during the holiday season, withOUT having to feel guilty for using vacation time–Or feeling guilty for wanting time off, but feeling like I shouldn’t take it because I have no real way to go and visit my family, and Jay’s is mostly all here in town.
So instead, I stay put, venture to the kitchen, and whip up things like these Butter Pecan M&M Shortbread. I picked up a bag of the seasonal M&Ms and had no idea what to do with them. Jay suggested shortbread, and I figured I’d just top them with the candies.
The final product was a success. I was afraid at first the candies wouldn’t stick, but by the time the shortbread cooled, they were fine.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Slightly adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook (1930-2000 Limited Edition)
Whisk together the sugar and flour in a medium mixing bowl. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, two knives, or clean hands, until the mixture resembles wet sand. Form the mixture into a ball and knead until smooth.
Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and roll or pat out into a 6x8-inch rectangle, between 1/2-inch and 1/4-inch thick. With a sharp knife, cut the dough into strips 3-inches long and 1-inch wide.
Place on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake for 20-25 minutes.
As soon as the shortbread is removed from the oven, gently press 3 candies into the tops of each strip. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Slightly adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook (1930-2000 Limited Edition)