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Preheat the oven to 350 F. With a wooden spoon or in an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until very smooth. Sift the flour into the butter mixture and, using your fingers, work all ingredients into a crumbly but very fine mixture. At this point, add the cayenne pepper, or your choice of other flavorings. Butter the molds and dust the bottom and sides with sugar. Press the shortbread dough into the molds. Bake until golden brown. The time varies from 10 minutes up, depending on the size of the mold. Do not overbake. Cool on racks before unmolding. VARIATIONS: To make the more traditional shortbread, you can substitute a few drops of vanilla extract, 1/4 cup minced candied citron or lemon peel, or 2 tablespoons ground blanched almonds for the cayenne pepper. Source: Hors dOeuvres, by Martha Stewart Typed for you by Karen Mintzias
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