This is the shortbread that I grew up eating. My family only made them at Christmas-time, and generally as part of a massive cookie baking weekend. Very small cookie cutters (1/2" across) in shapes like stars, diamonds and the like made the cookies especially attractive and tasty. There is something about the one-bite cookie that I love.
(makes about 5 dozen)
1 cup softened butter
1/2 + 2 Tbsp. sugar
2-1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
(Unit conversion page)
In large bowl, with portable mixer at medium, or wooden spoon, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy. With wooden spoon, stir in flour until smooth and well combined. Dough will be stiff.
Refrigerate dough several hours. Then divide into two parts; refrigerate until ready to roll out.
On lightly floured surface, roll out dough, one part at a time, l/3" thick. Cut out, using l-l/2" or 2" cookie cutters. Bake on ungreased cookie sheets 25 min. at 300 until light golden. Cool on wire rack.
Alternatively, use small 1/2" cutters and decrease the baking time slightly.