Here’s a little known fact I learned from the Kerrygold folks at The First Annual Food Buzz Blogger Festival in San Francisco last November: Yellow butter is a sure indicator that the cows were grass fed. A whiter colored butter means cattle were instead fed grain . And of course, this being a Food Blogger Festival, we were able to sample the goods…Kerrygold butter made only from butter produced by cows that graze on Ireland’s lush rolling fields. I detected an extremely light and flavorful butter perfect not only for spreading on crackers but I could only imagine…baking! This being the New Year and a premiere baking season, I thought I’d pass along some seasonal recipes sent to me by Kerrygold:
You know something good is coming when your house fills with the tantalizing aroma of browning butter. These Butter Shortbread Petticoat Tails melt-in-your-mouth and are delicious on their own or drizzled with a thin icing glaze made with confectioners sugar and cream. The dough can be frozen so make a few batches and toss a few in the freezer. When company comes, defrost and bake.
Butter Shortbread Petticoat Tails
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
8 ounces (1 cup) cold Kerrygold Pure Irish Unsalted Butter,
cut into 3/4-inch pieces*
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Have ready a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Sift the flour, cornstarch and salt into the large bowl of an electric mixer. Add the sugar and mix on low speed just to blend the ingredients, 15 seconds. With the mixer running add the butter pieces and continue mixing until crumbs form and there is no loose flour, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, mixing until large clumps form that pull away from the side of the bowl, about 15 seconds. Transfer the dough to the tart pan. Use the palm of your hand to press the dough evenly into the pan. Use a thin metal spatula to smooth the top. The dough will be 1/2 inch thick. Use a fork to prick the dough at 2-inch intervals. Use a small sharp knife to mark 12 even wedge-shaped cookies. Bake the cookies until the top is light golden, about 1 hour. Immediately use a small sharp knife to cut completely through the marked wedges. Cool the shortbread thoroughly in the pan. Remove the sides of the pan and separate the cookies. The cookies can be stored in a tightly covered container for up to 1 week.
Makes 12 large cookies
For hot appetizers, a batch of cheesy Kerrygold Potato Bites stuffed with three different fillings is simple to make and perfect for an impromptu get together.
15 (1 1/2-inch) yellow, white or red potatoes (about 2 pounds)
1 package (7 ounces) Kerrygold Dubliner or Blarney Castle Cheese, shredded, divided
2 tablespoons Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter
3 tablespoons milk
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Chopped fresh parsley (optional)
Mushroom Herb: Melt 1 tablespoon Kerrygold Butter in a small skillet. Stir in 3/4 cup finely chopped wild mushrooms and 1 clove minced garlic. Cook and stir over medium heat for about 3 minutes, then stir in 1 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs.
Carrot Leek: Melt 1 tablespoon Kerrygold Butter in a small skillet. Stir in 1/2 cup minced carrots, 1/2 cup sliced and coarsely chopped leeks and 1 clove minced garlic. Cook and stir over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes or until carrots are soft, then stir in 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill.
Spinach Chive: Melt 1 tablespoon Kerrygold Butter in a small skillet. Stir in 1 cup finely chopped, lightly packed fresh spinach and 1 clove minced garlic. Cook and stir over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes to wilt spinach, then stir in 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives.
Place potatoes in a large microwave-safe bowl. Add 2 tablespoons water; cover and cook on HIGH for 10 minutes, stirring or shaking potatoes after 5 minutes. Drain water and let stand until cool enough to handle. Cut each potato in half. Using a melon baller or very small spoon, scoop out the centers into a medium bowl, leaving a potato shell. Mash potato then stir in 2/3 of the shredded cheese, the butter and milk. Place equal amounts into 3 bowls, then stir 1 filling into each bowl; season each to taste with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 425°F and line a large baking sheet with foil. Place potato shells on baking sheet and spoon equal amounts of filling into each. Place a large pinch of remaining cheese on top of each potato and bake for 15 minutes or until tops are lightly browned. Serve warm garnished with parsley, if desired.
Makes about 30 appetizers.
photos courtesy of Kerrygold