Shortbread

by Maureen on December 10, 2013

There I was, waist deep in laundry and folding John’s dad’s undies when John walked through the door today.

“Presents!!!” he yelled.

“For whom?”

“You!  -  who’s Joanne?”

shortbread

My friend Joanne from What’s on the List asked for my address last week and thinking she was going to send me a Christmas card, never gave another thought about it.  Well, it WAS a card but there was a delightful gift inside.  She sent me a shortbread mold.

That’s wonderful but there’s a story behind it.  For the past two weeks I’ve been harping on and off about wanting a shortbread mold for Christmas.  The other day after a doctor’s appointment I stopped by the local op shop and walked around and around their kitcheny stuff looking for a mold.

When I got home I told John I was going to have to break down and buy a new one because I couldn’t find one on the cheap.  He rolls his eyes at me when I say stuff like this.  He would never think of going to an op shop for anything much less a kitchen tool or dish.

Then something else crossed my mind and shortbread was no longer the big issue.  John’s mother is moving up near us and he’s been making all the arrangements.  She’s got the big A and the whole family is stressing.

So imagine my excitement when I opened the package from Joanne and it was just what I wanted?  How spooky is that?  Seriously spooky.

I immediately wrote to her and asked if I had told her I’d been looking for one.  Joanne wrote back and said no but Lorraine from Not Quite Nigella was looking for one and when she found one at a good price she bought all they had.  …And I got one!

shortbread #fail

Okay, now Lorraine and the others are going to post their shortbread and it’s going to be gorgeous.  Mine on the other hand was a first-time fail.  I think I tried to de-pan it too soon and maybe the lavender made a difference.  I’ll give it another try tomorrow.

Thank you, Joanne, my shortbread mold will be used a lot and I’ll think of you every time.  The recipe I used was this Lavender Shortbread Recipe

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{ 101 comments… read them below or add one }

Abbe @ Abbe's Cooking Antics December 10, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Oh I LOVE Shortbread. My mum always has a tin of Scottish Shortbread Biscuits in the kitchen and it’s the first place I head when I walk through the front door. She’s started hiding them. I can’t say as I’ve ever tried it with Lavender in it, that’s a new one for me!

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Maureen December 10, 2013 at 10:36 pm

They’re all gone! The entire shortbread was demolished at dinner but the mold is clean and ready for test #2

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Joanne T Ferguson December 10, 2013 at 7:22 pm

G’day and *blush, blush* Maureen, true!
I was sooooooooooooooooooooooo excited when I got your email AND that it was beyond spooky, you were looking for one and is what I surprised you with too!
I should have taken a photo, but I had a Shortbread fail today…
I thought mine cooled down for too long…put some lemon zest in it and think I should have let the dough rest in the fridge for an hour before baking; was VERY pliable when I put it in the mold, but just did NOT want to come out and then it crumbled! Hubby said it tasted great, but I will have another try tomorrow too! I am sure we will get this sorted before Lorraine finds out hers has arrived! Seriously…thank you! GREATLY appreciate ALL you do! Joanne

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Maureen December 10, 2013 at 10:38 pm

LOL I’m so glad I wasn’t the only one to have a fail. :) It was really good. I used the Thermomix recipe and I’ll use a different one tomorrow. :)

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A_Boleyn December 13, 2013 at 5:33 am

I wondered if there were instructions somewhere that would help in getting the shortbreads out so I googled and found this. Hope it helps.

Mold Use Instructions: Prepare wooden (or ceramic) molds by lightly
brushing vegetable oil over all interior surfaces, being sure to
reach all the crevices and indentations. (A pastry or basting brush
works well for this task.) Lightly sprinkle flour over molds, tipping
them back and forth until all the crevices are coated, then inverting
and tapping them against a hard surface to remove all excess flour.
(A thin film works best and produces more attractive cookies.) The
molds must be redusted after each cookie, but do not need to be
re-oiled.
A_Boleyn recently posted..F is for Frangipane

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:08 am

Ahh I only used shortening but I did use a brush to get in all the nooks and crannies. I didn’t use flour. Yay! Thanks so much.

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Iron Chef Shellie December 10, 2013 at 7:48 pm

I never thought about having a mould for shortbread, but it makes so much sense to have one now!

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Maureen December 10, 2013 at 10:36 pm

I’ve seen them for years and this year I was determined to have one. So far I’m not good at it. :)

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SallyBR December 10, 2013 at 10:13 pm

HA! Would you believe I did not know anything about a shortbread mold? And I don’t make shortbread that often, but now I want one…. life is interesting…

beautiful mold….

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Maureen December 10, 2013 at 10:39 pm

I know. I wanted one and I hope I use it enough to warrant all the looking around I did before being surprised with one. :)

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Shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com December 11, 2013 at 1:17 am

Aww – so so sweet of Joanne!
And your shortbread looks awesome!
Shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com recently posted..Marvelous Chocolate Cake!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:46 pm

It was incredibly kind of Joanne to do this for me.

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John@Kitchen Riffs December 11, 2013 at 2:14 am

You know, I think Mrs K R needs a mold! We both love shortbread. Sounds like you’re going to have a lot of fun finding a recipe that works for you! So nice to get unexpected goodies in the mail, isn’t it?
John@Kitchen Riffs recently posted..PB&J Thumbprint (Thimble) Cookies

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:46 pm

It was a terrific thing to have happen.

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Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella December 11, 2013 at 3:23 am

Isn’t Joanne lovely? I’ve always wanted a shortbread mold and when I saw hers I asked her where it was from. I wanted to pay for it but she wouldn’t let me! I’m away at the moment so mine are probably waiting for me at the post box!
Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella recently posted..Festive Eggnog Cupcakes

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:17 am

I’m eager to see how fancy yours is. :)

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Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella December 11, 2013 at 3:24 am

P.S. it doesn’t look like a fail at all!

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Tricia @ Saving room for dessert December 11, 2013 at 3:39 am

What a wonderful gift! That is kind of spooky – you were getting shortbread vibes! The cookie looks great to me!

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:17 am

It WAS spooky but at the same time pretty darned exciting. My hunt is over. :)

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Abbe@This is How I Cook December 11, 2013 at 3:58 am

I love surprises! This looks like a great one. Someone once gave me a mold and I never had the patience to get it right! Now you’ve got me thinking about where it might have disappeared to! Regardless-I love shortbread and thank goodness it always tastes great with or without the mold!
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Vicki Bensinger December 11, 2013 at 4:39 am

I think these turned out great for your first time. I’m certain they were delicious. That’s what cooking and baking is all about – trial and error. Next time they’ll be perfect but honestly I’m sure they tasted perfect and that’s really all that counts! I think those molds are difficult anyway!
Vicki Bensinger recently posted..My Favorite Holiday Recipes & Homemade Gifts!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Vicki, I’m determined to make this work. :)

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Norma Chang December 11, 2013 at 5:08 am

I never knew there was such a thing as a shortbread mold, should look for one next time I am in a store’s kitchen department. Your shortbread was delicious and that’s all that matters.
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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Even the dog liked the crumbs that Rob dropped. :)

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Celia December 11, 2013 at 6:33 am

I think your shortbread looks delicious! Such a kind gift from Joanne! :)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:40 pm

It was very cool and totally unexpected.

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Mallory @ Because I Like Chocolate December 11, 2013 at 6:40 am

I have never made shortbread in a pan like this, I always portion it into individual cookies. I like the idea of a nice slice of shortbread though!
Mallory @ Because I Like Chocolate recently posted..Cranberry White Chocolate Snickerdoodles

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:16 am

Hi Mallory, I have always done individual cookies too but I like the plate of decorated cookies. Perfect for a tea party.

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A_Boleyn December 11, 2013 at 6:45 am

What a lovely and unexpected Christmas present.

I keep meaning to try one of the more unique or savoury shortbread combinations but end up making the same old version time after time. If I had a lovely mold like yours I might be inspired to be more creative. :)
A_Boleyn recently posted..Chinese Dishes in Progress

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:40 pm

She said they weren’t expensive so maybe you’ll find one at a ridiculously low price and you can experiment.

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A_Boleyn December 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm

It gives me an excuse to visit kitchen equipment stores in any case. :)
A_Boleyn recently posted..F is for Frangipane

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Linda December 11, 2013 at 7:48 am

Now I want one too!! My sister loves shortbread, well, I do too, but she really loves it. I just make it the plain old way, but this makes it more special! I’m going to shop around and see if I spot any deals!! How lucky and spooky that was!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:40 pm

It was spooky, Linda. I was sure I must have mentioned it to her. Nope.

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Lizzy (Good Things) December 11, 2013 at 7:50 am

Ah, those elusive things that we find we want or need, despite the fact that we have a house spilling over with stuff! I used to sell a range of pretty shortbread moulds when I co-owned that cookware store, but never added one to my kitchen. Hope you are feeling better my friend.

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:39 pm

I have good days and bad days, Liz – probably like you. One day we’ll both be running through meadows together. :)

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ChopinandMysaucepan December 11, 2013 at 8:31 am

Dear Maureen,

Being a baking tragic, I’ve always marveled at how those delightful crumbly shortbread are made. Looks good even though it’s a first time effort.

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:38 pm

Shortbread isn’t very difficult – there are only 3 ingredients. :) 4 if you count the lavender. I think it’s the easiest thing to make.

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The Café Sucre Farine December 11, 2013 at 8:39 am

Oh man, I would love to get one of those on my doorstep, very cool. I’m such a shortbread addict but have never had a shortbread mold. Now I will be keeping my eye open. I love sweet surprises like this and ………… sweet friends like you!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:38 pm

I thought I was the only one who didn’t have one. :)

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Nancy@jamjnr December 11, 2013 at 8:54 am

Such a thoughtful and timely gift. I’m sure you will have fun trying to suss it out and if it’s edible it’s not a fail as far as I’m concerned!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:37 pm

We ate every bite and the dog ate the crumbs. :)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:47 pm

It was good, just not picture perfect. :)

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Claire @ Claire K Creations December 11, 2013 at 9:03 am

Maureen until two minutes ago I didn’t know such thing existed and now I want one too! What a lovely surprise.
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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:37 pm

LOL You need one and your lovely mother too!

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Hannah December 11, 2013 at 10:14 am

Well golly, you learn something new every day. A shortbread mold! No idea that was something that existed.

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:36 pm

You’ve probably seen them and not realised what they are. It’s just a dish with a pattern. :)

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Roberta December 11, 2013 at 11:38 am

Now do you think you could make salted caramel shortbread? I stead of sugar plums dancing in my head I have dreams of salted caramel shortbread dancing in my head ever since I saw it in a cook book from the library.

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:35 pm

Salted caramel shortbread? I’m drooling at the thought!

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Kitchen Belleicious December 11, 2013 at 1:37 pm

shortbread. love shortbread and these looks amazing

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:34 pm

I do too and it’s so easy to make but I don’t make it often or I’d be the size of a barn.

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ChgoJohn December 11, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Like so many others, I, too, love shortbread. How nice — and remarkably serendipitous — that you received one as a gift.Christmas came a wee bit early. :)
ChgoJohn recently posted..See Quince? Make Jam First Then Jelly

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:34 pm

I couldn’t believe it!

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InTolerant Chef December 11, 2013 at 6:28 pm

What a lovely, thoughtful gift! Your shortbread sounds delicious, I adore lavender :)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:34 pm

You don’t need much and it has that wonderful lavender scent. Thank you Herbies. :)

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Kari @ bite-sized thoughts December 11, 2013 at 6:44 pm

How lovely! And I love lavender in things like this, so I approve of your recipe choice even if it may have made getting it out of the pan tricky (it actually looks pretty intact to me anyway!).
Kari @ bite-sized thoughts recently posted..Edible gift ideas {Christmas ideas 2013}

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:33 pm

It wasn’t perfect but it will be tomorrow or I’ll run out of butter. :)

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tania@mykitchenstories.com.au December 11, 2013 at 8:26 pm

Oh Maureen, how fantastic. A wish granted in such a lovely way. What a nice thing to do Joanne!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:32 pm

It was pretty spooky, Tania. :)

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Krista December 11, 2013 at 10:13 pm

I’m a happy op shop scavenger too! :-) I love finding treasures there. I’ve never used a shortbread mold before, but I fancy the idea of lavender shortbread. :-)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:33 pm

I’ve made it before in bar shapes but I’m determined to make this mold work. :)

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Dedy@Dentist Chef December 12, 2013 at 1:33 am

Somehow, i believe there’s nothing such coinsidence my friend……….
i guess your pray just god APPROVED sign in Heaven then, you should be blessed and maybe you just paying forward with any kindness before…
i guess nothing better than got what u want in HIS time, God Blessed You then….

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:32 pm

Well said, Dedy!

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Ash-foodfashionparty December 12, 2013 at 2:55 am

I had no clue about the shorbread mold but now that I see this, I need it. I am on a hunt.
It looks good, even if a few bits got stuck, I would be all over this cookie.

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:15 am

I’m going to make it work today.. no more sticky bits :)

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ATasteOfMadness December 12, 2013 at 4:52 am

Shortbread mold? I am so jealous, I love shortbread!
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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:14 am

I know!! I couldn’t believe it. :)

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yummychunklet December 12, 2013 at 5:27 am

Lovely large shortbread!

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:31 pm

I was supposed to cut it into pieces. I did. I shared. :)

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Hotly Spiced December 12, 2013 at 6:18 am

I haven’t met Joanne but she sounds like the nicest person. How gorgeous of her to send you this mold. You must all be flat out with all the arrangements! I think it’s good she’s moving up to be near you. Will Rob live with her or stay on with you? What a busy time you’re having. I make shortbread but not in a mold (probably because I don’t have one). I just make them as individual biscuits (cookies) but when they come out of the oven I let them sit because they harden as they cool xx

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:30 pm

Yeah, I took these out too soon. Tomorrow we’ll do it again. Rob will stay with us but he’ll visit Joan often. She’ll be in the ‘sensitive care’ section of an aged care home. It’s really sad and John has to do the telling and the moving all by himself. He said, “What bothers me most is breaking her heart.”

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Liz December 12, 2013 at 7:57 am

Aren’t blogging friends the best? What a gorgeous mold!

PS…good luck with moving your MIL. I’ll keep you all in my thoughts…as we did the same thing with my mom in September.

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:14 am

Lordy, every scenario is going through our heads. What if she won’t get on the plane? What if she yells and screams? I remember your road trip and it’s a long drive from Victoria to Queensland – over a thousand miles – and John is doing it alone.

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wok with ray December 12, 2013 at 12:54 pm

I love shortbread. That mold is a great idea for making shortbread and it was a nice early Christmas gift too!
wok with ray recently posted..Pancit Canton

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:27 pm

It was a huge surprise!

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mjskit December 12, 2013 at 2:39 pm

Someone has a direct mental connection with their good friend! What a cute little shortbread mold. Since I’m not a baker, I have to admit that I didn’t know there was such a thing. :) You’re going to have some fun baking this holiday! Have fun!
mjskit recently posted..Persimmon Cranberry Parfait

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:27 pm

My mother-in-law has one and I’ve envied it from afar. :)

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Ai-Ling@blueapocalypse December 12, 2013 at 3:18 pm

I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a shortbread mould. Is that piece of shortbread just for one person? Maybe a mould is a good idea when I don’t want to share and just want to have one big piece of shortbread all to myself. It is buttery goodness :)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:26 pm

LOL no, the mold (or mould) shows cutting lines so each piece is like a piece of pie.

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Lisa the Gourmet Wog December 12, 2013 at 4:38 pm

fail or no fail, I bet it still tasted absolutely amazing!
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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:26 pm

It did! I love the scent of lavender.

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Glamorous Glutton December 12, 2013 at 5:23 pm

What a wonderful surprise and spookily kind of Joanne. I’ve never made shortbread in a mould, is it different from baking it in a tin? How do you stop it sticking, do you have to ‘season’ the mould? I’m surprised you have time for baking with all that’s going on. GG

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:25 pm

I used a brush and coated the mold with shortening. It stuck a little. I’m trying it again tomorrow.

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Karen December 12, 2013 at 7:32 pm

I LOVE lavender in baking and especially shortbread, and this looks just amazing Maureen! Also, what a thoughtful surprise and such a treat to know you are both on the same wavelength. Karen

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:09 am

I didn’t know we were on the same wavelength but we ARE both American. :)

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ela@GrayApron December 12, 2013 at 9:06 pm

I have never baked with lavender…I can’t imagine…just have to try. Beautiful inspiration, thanks! :) ela

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:25 pm

It’s a lovely addition to shortbread.

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Ramona December 12, 2013 at 9:40 pm

I have never made shortbread cookies… I like your mold. :) I would love to try this. :)

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Maureen December 12, 2013 at 11:24 pm

Episode two coming up tomorrow. :)

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sheila December 13, 2013 at 12:37 am

Love those kind of surprises! I think your shortbread looks lovely, I can almost smell it’s butter goodness!

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:19 am

You are on holiday, remember? No more comments until you’re “back”. I will still love you. :) but thanks. LOL

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Eva December 13, 2013 at 4:19 am

I am continuously surprised at the generosity of our blogging friends! I am so happy that you loved the gift. The lavender shortbread looks absolutely wonderful. Hope you are well.

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:08 am

I was immensely pleased and you’re right, we have good friends. :)

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MyMansBelly December 13, 2013 at 5:48 am

There is NO SUCH THING as a shortbread fail. If it’s edible…it’s a win in my book. Yes, I’ve yet to meet a shortbread I didn’t like. ;) I’m pretty sure I’d end up breaking the mold before I even got the dough in it. So my shortbreads are boring little squares or circles. Can’t wait to see the next batch.
MyMansBelly recently posted..Chocolate Peppermint Kiss Cake Mix Christmas Cookies

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:07 am

I’m working on it! :)

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Vicky and Ruth @mayihavethatrecipe December 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm

What a beautiful present! Lavender shortbread sounds fantastic, can’t wait for your recipe!
Vicky and Ruth @mayihavethatrecipe recently posted..Chocolate Dipped Cranberry Coconut Cookies Gluten Free & Vegan

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Maureen December 13, 2013 at 7:00 pm

I got caught up today so it’s going to have to be tomorrow :)

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Eileen December 13, 2013 at 10:54 pm

Now that’s karama! I love it when good things like that happen. Shortbread is one of my favorite treats but I’ve never had it with lavender. Sounds interesting.

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Maureen December 14, 2013 at 10:15 am

It is :)

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Laura (Tutti Dolci) December 14, 2013 at 10:05 am

I love shortbread, what a wonderful mold!

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Catherine December 16, 2013 at 7:36 am

Dear Maureen, I bet it tasted wonderful!
That was a nice surprise to receive a present.
Blessings dear. Catherine xo

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Maureen December 16, 2013 at 5:31 pm

It probably makes me seem shallow to learn I LOVE presents. :)

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