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Canestrelli - Italian Shortbread Cookies
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
40 mins
Course: Dessert/Cookies
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Canestrelli
Servings: 24
Calories: 116 kcal
Author: Chris Scheuer
  • Ingredients:
  • 6 ½ ounces butter (13 tablespoons)
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup cornstarch
  • 3 hard-boiled egg yolks see notes
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • powdered sugar for dusting
  1. Directions:
  2. With an electric mixer combine butter, sugar, and mix until well combined. Add salt and vanilla.
  3. Press the egg yolks through a fairly fine-mesh strainer and add to the butter/sugar mix, then beat until well combined. Don’t skip the egg-straining, or you’ll end up with lumps of egg yolk in your dough.
  4. Add the flour and the cornstarch to the butter mix, taking care not to overwork (and warm) the dough. Sandwich the dough between two pieces of plastic wrap, or parchment paper, then pat flat into a disk and chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 325˚F (160° C). Roll the dough, still sandwiched between the two pieces of plastic wrap or parchment paper, to about a ⅜ inch or 1 cm thickness and cut with a 2-inch flower-shaped cookie cutter. If your cutter doesn't have a hole cut-out in the center you can use the cap of a marker. To avoid the dough clogging the cap, place a piece of plastic wrap slightly larger than the cookie cutter over the cookie, then cut the hole. The dough from the hole, wrapped in plastic wrap, will still get inside the cap, but you can easily pull it off and set it aside with the other scraps of dough. Take leftover scraps of dough, press them together and place between two pieces of plastic wrap. Press dough into a disk and refrigerate for about 30 minutes or freeze for 10 minutes, then cut more cookies.
  6. Place the cookies on sheet pans lined with parchment paper, two inches apart, and bake for 18-20 minutes or until pale golden. Let the cookies cool on the pans for 5 minutes, then carefully transfer onto a wire rack until completely cool. Dust with powdered sugar, then store in an airtight container. These keep well and are supposedly even better after a day or two. It's hard to keep them that long around my house.
Nutrition Facts
Canestrelli - Italian Shortbread Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 116 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 40mg13%
Sodium 104mg5%
Potassium 12mg0%
Carbohydrates 12g4%
Fiber 0g0%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 225IU5%
Calcium 6mg1%
Iron 0.5mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.