I love baking all year round but there is something about using cinnamon, ginger and mixed spice in your baking this time of year that fills the house with festive, comforting smells. Below is my fail safe festive shortbread recipe – the best part is you can swap out the spices and add chocolate chips if you prefer or leave it plain – it’s totally up to you! The best thing about this recipe is all you need is your hands, bowl, rolling pin and any shaped cutters you like, or you can form it by hand! But no technical baking equipment required!
- 250g Plain Flour (and some extra for dusting)
- 75g Caster Sugar
- 175g Cold butter (cold is key!)
- 1 ½ Tsp of cinnamon
- 1 Tsp of mixed spice
- Golden Caster Sugar (for sprinkling)
- Heat your oven to 180 degrees centigrade / 350 degrees Fahrenheit / GM4 and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper
- Combine the flour and sugar and spices in a bowl and then add the butter in blocks and rub it all through your fingers. You should end up with a bowl of the combined ingredients which look a little like breadcrumbs. (Note – if you are doing a chocolate chip version you should mix the butter, sugar and flour together and then add the chips after).
- Work the dough together into a ball – it may not feel like it’s coming together and will be a little crumbly but this is what you want – it should hold its shape when squeezed!
- Roll out the dough on a floured service until it’s around 1.5cm thick and then form it however you like – I went with snowflakes and Christmas trees!
- Put in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until golden – when they are out of the oven and warm sprinkle them in some golden caster sugar
- Wait till they cool a little and then devour with a cup of hot chocolate or even better – mulled wine!
So, that is my secret, family short bread recipe! Please make and enjoy and let me know how you get on, honestly the smell throughout the house has never failed to put a smile on my face!