Make-ahead sweet and savory slice-and-bakes make you the hostess with the mostess.
While it's tempting and awfully convenient to pick up a roll of slice-and-bake cookies from the supermarket, try to resist. Making your own is easy, gratifying and yields tastier results. The dough mixes quickly, keeps for days in the fridge (or up to a month in the freezer) and can be baked one pan at a time at a moment's notice. Just slice as many as you want and return the unused portion to the fridge. When guests drop in, add sliced fruits, olives, nuts, wine or a pot of tea and you're ready to roll.
Strapped for time?
- Mix and roll the dough on the weekend, pop in the refrigerator or freezer, then thaw and bake throughout the week.
- Chill the dough in the freezer. This takes about 30 minutes versus 3 hours in the fridge.
- Whip up a second batch while the first one chills.
- Set frozen dough on the counter while the oven heats. It will be ready to slice by the time the oven is up to temperature.
- Store away from onions and other aromatics as butter picks up flavors easily.
—By Charmian Christe
A shortbread with a subtle lemon twist, these go perfectly with tea or hot apple cider.