It took a while and batches and batches of fail biscuits but finally I found a recipe that mades a non-spread sugar biscuit. You can add lemon zest or different essences for different flavours but I sort of like vanilla. I used these to make edible draughts which looked like the love child of iced gems and PartyRings.
- 220g softened butter
- 200g caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 egg, large
- 425g plain flour
- Cream together the butter and the sugar – the key is to not over cream, just make sure it is all combines and smooth
- Add in the beaten egg and vanilla essence and mix
- Finally, add in the flour and combine into a dough (probably with your fingers)
- Divide into 4 portions. Working with one at a time lightly flour the worksurface and gently knead the dough until it is smooth and workable. Sprinkle on some more flour if it feels too sticky
- Roll out on a floured surface and cut of biscuit shapes
If you want to decorate them like I did, I used royal icing sugar and water plus paste food colouring and the flooding technique, outline the biscuit using a fine-ish nozzle on a piping bag and then fill in and tap to smooth out the icing.
The results were totally playable and pretty tasty.
I haven’t been baking so much recently – life and work have been stressful and busy and finding the time for new complicated recipes has not really happened. I have been working on perfecting some old favourites though. Most recently my scone recipe. I love scones but until now everytime I made them it seemed they were tough and too flat. This recipe makes the most light, risen scones even plus it is super easy (using mainly store cupboard items) and goes perfectly with strawberry jam and clotted cream.
- 350g self-raising flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 85g butter, cut into cubes
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- 175ml milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- squeeze lemon juice (it can be the bottled stuff)
- beaten egg, to glaze or use milk but it will be less shiny
- Heat oven to 220C Put the flour and other dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix well. Add the butter, then rub in with your fingers until the mix looks like fine crumbs or whiz it in the food processor (I do this because I tend to over rub) Stir in the sugar.
- Heat the milk in the microwave for about 30 secs until it is warm but not hot and then add a squeeze of lemon juice – the lemon juice is not for flavour, it is to activate the baking powder more quickly giving them a bigger rise
- Put a baking sheet in the oven.
- Make a well in the flour mix, pour in the milk and lemon and combine it with a regular dinner knife. Dredge some flour onto the work surface and tip the dough out. Sprinkle the dough and your hands with flour, then fold the dough over 2-3 times until it’s a little smoother. Flatten gently into a round about 3cm deep.
- Take a 5cm cutter, dip it into some flour. Plunge into the dough, then repeat, reforming and re-flattening the dough once or twice if necessary. Brush the tops with beaten egg, then carefully place onto the hot baking tray.
- Bake for 10 mins until risen and golden.
- Serve with jam and cream – AMAZING!