The New York Times reports that visitors staying at either of Washington D.C.'s two Ritz Carltons for the inauguration will receive Michelle Obama's cookies in their room. The cookies won't be made by the first lady-elect herself, of course, but come from a recipe Mrs. Obama submitted to Family Circle magazine (as the Times story details). A modified version of the recipe appears below.
Michelle Obama's Shortbread Cookies, adapted
1 cup or 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg, separated
1-1/2 tablespoons Amaretto
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon grated orange rind
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 cups flour
¾ cup slivered almonds
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Beat sugar and butter until mixture is smooth.
3. Slowly add egg yolk, Amaretto, salt, orange and lemon rind, mixing well.
4. Slowly mix in flour until mixture is well blended.
5. Pat the mixture into an even layer in an ungreased 10 by 15 inch jelly roll pan.
6. Whisk the egg white until foaming and brush on top of dough. Sprinkle with almonds.
7. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes until lightly browned.
Cool slightly and cut into two inch squares while still warm.
Yield: 40 squares