Wondrous Small Cakes

This week I'm in New York City helping my sister pack up and move. In the process, we realized there were four sticks of butter in the frig that simply couldn't be wasted. So we dug this recipe out of one of the boxes and whipped up a batch of small cakes. They are an awful lot like shortbread cookies and would make an excellent crust for fruit pies or put in mini muffin pans as cups for fruit preserves or berry compote. They are highly addictive with tea. I found some delicious roasted green tea at a store in Korea town and it's the perfect pairing.

Small Cakes
adapted from The Gift of Southern Cooking by Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock
Makes 12 cakes

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp ground ginger
demearara sugar (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 12 muffin tins or muffin pan.
Put butter, flour, sugar, salt, and ginger in a bowl. Mix on low until blended. (I do this with my fingers.)
Spoon equal amounts of  batter into muffin tins and press gently to flatten. Top with demearara sugar. 
Bake 15-20 minutes until lightly browned. Cool for five minutes before turning onto a cooling rack.

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