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Biscuits and Cookies are always fun to bake and I enjoy experimenting with different dough mixtures.  With the the New Year in full swing, I have the time to sit down and write the recipe.  These are simple to make, rustic in appearance, delicious,  can be beautifully presented and enjoyed by all.

Shortbread 
2 cups plain flour (sifted)
200 grams unsalted butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon (optional)
1 cup icing sugar + extra for dusting (confectioners’ sugar sifted)
1/4 cup strawberry jam
1/4 cup apricot jam

Coffee Hazelnut 
150 grams plain flour (sifted)
1 1/2 cups of hazelnut meal
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg (beaten)
2 tbsp finely ground espresso coffee beans
160 grams unsalted butter (chilled and cut into cubes
3/4 cup caster sugar (superfine)
icing sugar for dusting (sifted) (confectioners’ sugar)

Preparation time:     30 minutes (Approximately) resting time in fridge 30 minutes
Cooking Time:     20 – 30 minutes (Approximately)
Makes:     24 Shortbread Biscuits (inclusive) & 24 Coffee Hazelnut Biscuits (Approximately)

Preheat the oven to 180ºC and line 2 baking trays with baking paper (for coffee hazelnut biscuits).  Have 2 baking trays ready to go for shortbread biscuits.  Select cookie cutters.  I selected circles and stars for the centre.  Small star for centre and a larger star to use as a pattern for round biscuits/cookies.

Shortbread

  1. Combine all the shortbread ingredients and in a bowl of a food processor and mix until it forms a ball of dough.
  2. Remove from the food processor and form into a ball of dough.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove fridge, remove plastic wrap, cut the dough in half.
  5. Prepare 2 sheets of baking paper and place one half of dough on paper.  Place a the other baking paper sheet on top and roll out into a circle approximately  1/2 cm thick using a rolling pin.
  6. Cut the bottom shapes out first and then the top layer using the star to cut in the centre of the dough.
  7. Gently removing the leftover pastry to be rolled out again.
  8. Lift the sheet of baking paper with the cut biscuits/cookies and place on a baking tray.
  9. Bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden.
  10. Remove from the oven and place aside to cool before assembling with strawberry jam.
  11. Place a teaspoon of jam in the centre of the biscuit/cookie and top with the top layer.
  12. With the remainder of the dough.  Form a large ball.
  13. With your hands grab a piece of dough the size of a golf ball and roll into a ball.
  14. Gently flatten the ball to form a disc and with your thumb indent in the centre creating a well.
  15. Place the large star on top of the biscuit/cookie to create a pattern
  16. Using a small spoon place apricot jam in the well.
  17. Place all the biscuits/cookies on baking tray lined with baking paper and bake until golden.
  18. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Coffee Hazelnut 

  1. Sift the flour and ground coffee into a large bowl, add the caster sugar and stir to combine.
  2. Rub the butter into the dry ingredients with your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
  3. Add the egg, vanilla and ground hazelnuts, then working quickly, use your hands to mix and form a dough.
  4. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove from fridge and allow to stand for 5 minutes before shaping biscuits/cookies.
  6. Using your fingers or spoon, scoop some dough the size of a golf ball.
  7. Shape into a ball and then shape into a disc.
  8. Place on baking trays lined with paper and place in the oven.
  9. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven and dust with icing sugar while hot.
  11. Set aside and allow to cool completely on trays.

Cook’s Tips

  • Shortbread dough can be tricky to work with when cutting shapes.  To remove the star from the centre of cut shape.  Gently lift off the baking paper using a knife or small thin spatula.
  • You may choose to use plain shapes no patterns, a large circle for biscuit and a small circle for centre to assist with getting the best result.
  • Before assembling you may wish to dust the top layer of biscuit with star shape cut out.
  • My cookie cutter for circle was 8cm and star 5cm.  (I am going to go a size smaller for both next time).

Enjoy!

Milanka's Fine Food

Milanka's Fine Food

"Join me on a journey of cooking, sharing recipes, exploring the different varieties and styles of cousine from around the world.  Using fresh ingredients to create healthy, delicious and flavoursome dishes. I would like to share my passion for food with you". Embrace fresh, wholesome food - Milanka

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