Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Surprise shortbread

I haven't been well for a couple of weeks and my appetite is pretty much nil. I surprised myself today by suddenly feeling the urge to bake shortbread. This is most unusual, considering:
  • I've eaten the equivalent of half a meal a day for the past two weeks and still felt bloated and ill;
  • I haven't eaten shortbread in years;
  • I've never baked it in my life. I vaguely recall making some shortbread-type things with fancy cookie cutters as a child, but don't think it was actually shortbread.
A Google search found a quite a few recipes, which varied vastly in terms of ingredients, methods, cooking times, etc. I took a stab and picked this NZ recipe, which conveniently uses a food processor and doesn't require creaming butter. I found the instructions to be quite ambiguous, so here it is in plain English.

Café Chick's surprise shortbread

  • 150g chilled butter, cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup cornflour
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar to sprinkle later
  1. Place all ingredients into a food processor bowl. Process gently until it resembles fine breadcrumbs, then continue processing until crumbs hold together. (Approximately 10 minutes)
  2. Using a 20cm spring form tin (round), line base with baking paper. Tip dough into tin and press evenly onto base.
  3. Remove outside ring before placing on oven tray. Using a sharp knife, mark dough into 12 wedges without cutting through. Prick at regular intervals with a fork.
  4. Sprinkle over extra sugar.
  5. Bake at 150 degrees Celsius for 50-60 minutes. Check to see if the shortbread is browning too quickly and lower temperature, if necessary.
  6. While still warm, slide onto a board (removing base and baking paper) and finish cutting into wedges. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Store in an airtight container.


Kelly said...

Hope you feel better soon!

Have you sampled the shortbread? It looks very good! I have only attempted to make shortbread once, during cooking class at intermediate. Unfortunately when I took the tray out of the oven, I didn't realise I tipped it slightly and one piece fell off onto the element at the bottom of the oven. We then had to turn the oven up really high for the next thing we were making and that innocently dropped piece of shortbread set the oven on fire, set off the smoke alarms and forced the whole school to line up on the field. Very humiliating!

Donna said...

It looks absolutely wonderful!!! I think I'm going to snag this and try it myself!