This is what it will look like after mixed. You'll be able to just pick it up and mold it.
And this is the finished product. It's SO. GOOD. And yes, I DID have to taste test those to make sure it turned out right! Clearly, my photography skills aren't advanced.
When it's still warm (or even after it's cooled) cut it into squares, triangles, or rectangles.
This is also a great gift idea, and it's very inexpensive too. I found some decorative salad plates on sale at Target (less than $5!), already had some wire ribbon (bought it on sale for about $1.50 at Wal-Mart last year), and already had the gift tags (Hobby Lobby last year, about $2 or less on sale). Just fill up the plate with the shortbread, cover with some saran wrap, cut an extra long piece of ribbon and tie around to make a big, pretty bow- threading the gift tag into one of the strands of ribbon before making the final tie on the bow. Easy, inexpensive, pretty, and yummy!
(Side note: I sure hope this wasn't a family secret, because I'm posting it without my Daddy's permission!)
1 cup butter (2 sticks) at room temperature (or soften slightly in microwave- don't melt it though!)
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking soda (optional- to make it fluffier)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients in an electric stand mixer, adding flour 1 cup at a time. After mixed, place in ungreased 8x8 square pan (there's enough butter in the shortbread that you don't need to grease the pan!). Shape in pan so that the shortbread is slightly mounded in the middle and pick all over with a fork. Bake for 30 minutes, or until lightly golden. Middle should be slightly mushy still (will harden as it cools). Remove from oven and pick all over with fork again. Let cool on wire rack and cut into squares, triangles, or rectangles (fingers).