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Ginger Shortbread

Ginger Shortbread

Though it's lightened, this traditional-style shortbread has all of the buttery flavor and tender, flaky texture of the original. For more pronounced ginger flavor, increase the ground ginger by 1/2 teaspoon. (Leave out the ginger for a plain version.) Wedges are a classic shortbread shape. To keep the texture of the bread pleasantly light, handle the dough as little as possible.

Cooking Light DECEMBER 2004

  • Yield: 16 cookies (serving size: 1 cookie)


  • 3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons cake flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • Dash of salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon ice water
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon turbinado or other coarse sugar
  • 1/4 ounce crystallized ginger, cut into 16 thin slices


Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, 1/4 cup sugar, ground ginger, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

Place butter in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth (about 1 minute). Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until combined. Add ice water; stir just until combined. Press mixture gently into a 4-inch circle on plastic wrap, and cover with additional plastic wrap. Chill for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Slightly overlap 2 sheets of plastic wrap on a slightly damp surface. Unwrap and place chilled dough on plastic wrap. Cover dough with 2 additional sheets of overlapping plastic wrap. Roll dough, still covered, into an 8-inch circle (the edges of the circle will crack slightly). Remove top sheets of plastic wrap, and fit dough, plastic wrap side up, onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Remove the remaining plastic wrap.

Sprinkle dough with 1 tablespoon of coarse sugar; press gently to help sugar adhere to dough. Lightly score dough into 16 wedges, cutting into, but not through, dough. Place 1 piece of crystallized ginger in each wedge; press gently to adhere.

Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until lightly gold in color. Remove from oven; cool 5 minutes. Cut through score lines to make 16 wedges. Place on a wire rack; cool completely.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 77
  • Calories from fat: 42%
  • Fat: 3.6g
  • Saturated fat: 2.3g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 0.9g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.2g
  • Protein: 0.7g
  • Carbohydrate: 10.7g
  • Fiber: 0.2g
  • Cholesterol: 9mg
  • Iron: 0.6mg
  • Sodium: 10mg
  • Calcium: 3mg

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Ginger Shortbread Recipe