BUTTER BISCUITS

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These thin, delicious buttery biscuits have definitely become one of my new favorite things to bake. They are really quick, simple and most importantly very moreish; because you can’t just stop at one. The butter biscuits are very similar to Scottish shortbread in taste and texture however they are lot less fickle to work with. When cutting the biscuit dough you can use a normal 7cm (2 3/4in) round cutter, I went a little overboard and used one or two OK maybe 4 types of cutters.

Makes: Approx 30                                Prep + Baking Time: 35 Mins

INGREDIENTS

  • 100g caster sugar
  • 225g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 150g butter, softened and diced
  • 1 egg yolk (this is what the original recipe says however I found the dough way too crumbly so I added in 2 and the mixture was fine, so try 1 at first and  if you have the same issue as me then add an extra egg yolk)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Demerara or caster sugar to sprinkle on top of the biscuits, you can also use vanilla sugar (optional)

METHOD 

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180c/160c (fan) and prepare a few baking trays.
  2. Put the sugar, flour, and butter into a large bowl and rub together or pulse/blend in a food processor until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. BeFunky CollageBB
  3. Add the egg yolk(s) and vanilla extract and bring the mixture together using your hands. BeFunky Collagebb1
  4. Cover the dough in cling film and chill for up to 1hr.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured plastic chopping board and knead it briefly until smooth. Putting it on the chopping board makes it easier to turn the dough when rolling it out. Roll the dough out to a thickness of about 5mm (1/4in).BeFunky Collage32
  6. Using a pastry cutter, cut out the biscuits and transfer them to the baking tray. Sprinkle some sugar on to the biscuits to give them extra sweetness and crunch.
  7. Bake 1 batch of biscuits at a time and keep the uncooked biscuits in the fridge while you wait for the others to be done baking, this will stop them getting soft.
  8. Bake the biscuits for 10-15mins until golden brown at the edges. Leave the biscuits to cool until firm enough to handle, then transfer to a wire rack. BeFunky Collage321
  9. Leave the biscuits to cool completely and transfer to a biscuit tin or cookie jar. They will keep well for up to 5 days.

Recipe Source: ‘Step-by-Step Baking’ by Caroline Bretherton

TOTALLY CHOCOLATE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

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These cookies absolutely live up to their name, they are so chocolatey and delicious that even someone like me who is not a great lover of chocolate can’t resist them. I like to bake half of them and then freeze the rest for another time and bake them unthawed when a much needed chocolate fix is required. They are so quick and easy to make that even if you don’t have a batch in the freezer you will have these cookies knocked up in no time and that chocolate craving you have will be gone as quick as it came.

MAKES: 12 Cookies

INGREDIENTS

  • 125g dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids
  • 150g plain flour (all-purpose flour)
  • 30g cocoa, sieved
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 125g soft butter
  • 75g light brown sugar
  • 50g white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, cold from the fridge
  • 350g (2 bags) semi-sweet chocolate morsels or dark chocolate chips

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven 170c/150 fan. Melt the 125g dark chocolate either in the microwave or in a heatproof dish over a pan of simmering water, make sure the dish does not touch the water.
  2. Put the flour, cocoa, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a bowl and mix.BeFunky Collage23
  3. Cream the butter and sugars in another bowl (you can use a freestanding mixer if you want). Add the melted chocolate and mix together. BeFunky Collage12
  4. Beat in the vanilla extract and cold egg, and then mix in the dry ingredients. Finally stir in the chocolate pieces.
  5. Scoop out 12 equal-sized mounds (an ice cream scoop and palette knife are the best tools) and place on a lined baking sheet about 6cm apart. Do not flatten them. P1000968
  6. Bake for 18mins. testing with a cake tester to make sure it comes out semi-clean and not wet with cake batter.
  7. Leave to cool slightly on the baking sheet for 5 mins, then transfer them to a cooling rack to harden as they cool.

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Recipe taken from: Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson