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Perfect Pie Crust

2 cups (240 g) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. (2.5 ml) salt
2/3 cup (160 g) chilled unsalted butter
4 T. (60 ml) cold water

Sift together flour and salt. Cut half of the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry blender Cut the other half of the butter into the dough until it is pea-sized. Sprinkle the dough with water and use a fork to lightly blend the water into the dough. If needed, add more water bit by bit, until you can gather the dough into a ball. Lightly flour a board, or use an unfloured silicone mat. Lightly flour a rolling pin, and roll the dough from the center outward to 1/8-inch thickness. Makes 1 pie crust.

Dipped Shortbread Cookies

1-1/2 cups (180 g) salted butter, room temperature
1 cup (100 g) powdered sugar
1 T. (15 ml) vanilla extract
3 cups (360 g) flour

1/4 cup (60 ml) heavy cream
1 cup (240 ml) chocolate chips
2 tsp. (10 ml) light corn syrup

Blend butter for 4 minutes on medium speed. Slowly blend in powdered sugar. Add vanilla and mix thoroughly. Add flour and mix at low speed until well-blended. Divide dough in half and form each into a disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1-1/2 hours.

Lightly flour a board (or use a silicone mat) and rolling pin. Roll out disks to 1/8-inch thickness, and cut out cookies with floured cookie cutters. Bake at 425°F (218°C) for 16-18 minutes, making sure they don’t get brown. Transfer immediately to cooling rack.

To prepare the chocolate sauce, heat cream in a heavy saucepan until scalded. Remove from heat, stir in corn syrup and chocolate chips, and then cover pan and let rest for 15 minutes. Whisk until smooth, but without creating bubbles. Dip each cookie in the glaze, and transfer to baking sheet covered in waxed paper. Chill for 10 minutes or until chocolate sets. Makes 4 dozen.

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