Here’s another Junior’s buttery, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread, but this time you’ll have enough dough to make a large tart crust.
- 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 extra-large egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously butter the bottom and sides of an 11-or 12-inch tart pan (preferably a nonstick one) with a removable bottom and fluted sides at least 1 inch high. Wrap the outside with aluminum foil, covering the bottom and all the way up the sides of the pan.
2. In a medium-size bowl, mix the flour and salt together.
3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer on high until creamy. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and beat until blended. Reduce the speed to low and mix in the flour just until it disappears and a dough forms. Work the dough with your hands until it comes together in a ball. Chill about 30 minutes if you have the time.
4. Flour your hands and put the dough in the center of the pan. Using the heels of your hands, press the dough into the bottom of the pan and up the sides. Work in a circular motion from the center out to the edge and try to achieve an even thickness. Prick the crust in several places with a dinner fork (the crust will bake more evenly).
5. Bake just until the crust sets and turns golden (do not overbake!), about 10 minutes. Leave the crust in the pan and transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool. Leave the oven on while you prepare the batter.