I baked this light, buttery shortbread to deliver to a friend, along with a small gift to celebrate her birthday.
FENNEL AND ORANGE SHORTBREAD
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons sugar
finely grated zest of 1 orange
1 3/4 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
1/2 cup butter, cut into chunks, at room temperature
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat oven to 350F.
In a bowl, combine flour and cornstarch. In a large mixer bowl combine sugar, orange zest and fennel, rub together. Add the butter, powdered sugar and salt, beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for 3 minutes or until the mixture is smooth, scraping down the bowl as needed. Add dry ingredients all at once, beating on low speed until combined.
Shape into a disk, place between sheets of parchment paper. Roll into an 8-inch circle. Lift off the top sheet and slide the dough, still on the bottom sheet, onto a baking sheet. Use a fork to prick the dough. Sprinkle with salt.
Bake shortbread for about 20 minutes or just until edges are lightly browned. Let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes. Cut into squares.
Recipe adapted from Better Homes and Gardens, December 2016