I tested 8 different butter cookie recipes, looking for the "perfect" butter cookie. It had to be buttery, a little crumbly (like shortbread), and not too sweet. This is the winner. I think these are the Worlds Best Butter Cookie, courtesy of Chef Alice Medrich.
- Beat the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla together until smooth and creamy.
- Mix in the egg yolk until well incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl at least once.
- Add the flour and mix just until incorporated.
- Scrape onto a lightly floured board and knead a few times, just until the dough smooths out.
- Turn onto a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a log, wrap up and refrigerate for several hours or freeze.
- Before baking, preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Line your baking sheets with parchment.
- Slice the dough into slices about 1/8" thick and place them on the sheets about an inch apart (they won't be spreading very much, but they need air room around each cookie).
- Bake until JUST beginning to turn golden around the edges, about 16-18 minutes.
- Note: you can do many things with these cookies.
- You could roll the dough out and cut shapes.
- You could slice them even thinner and sandwich them with chocolate or jam or lemon curd.
- You could make them and then dip them half into chocolate.
- You could just make them and eat them, which is my favorite.
- Whatever you do, they will be delicious.