Easy Shortbread (Assuming you don’t have a ShitOven)

Been snowing for days here in the UK. Although snow is pretty, quiet and benign its alter-ego, Ice, is my sworn enemy, so snow days are mixed blessings as far as I’m concerned. I managed two excursions out yesterday, and one today, shuffling along death-lined pavements marked with the final slippery footprints of the elderly. Dog likes it, though, as evidenced below:

20130120-141934.jpg

Anyway, god knows why I have attempted more baking today despite ShitOven seemingly getting hotter with each lighting. I’ve now sent a shortlist of potential replacements to the boyfriend. ShitOven’s demise is imminent. You’ll hear my gleeful cackles from space when it is finally deconnected and shat on from a great height by seagulls at the dump.

Shortbread, easier than you think and worth a go. I haven’t previously attempted it in ShitOven and won’t be doing so again, but don’t let that put you off. It’s really straightforward and bloody delicious and nice eating all year, not just for Xmas.

20130120-142249.jpg

Plain flour – 200g
Caster sugar – 80g
Cornflour (not pictured, SORRY) – 50g
Butter, bit chilled still (I prefer salted, then you don’t need to add any more salt) – 175g

20130120-142446.jpg

Beat the butter a bit till it starts to soften and cream. If you’re using a handbeater, this will probably happen – its a pain in the arse. Work through it.

20130120-142603.jpg

Add the caster sugar and continue to beat till creamy and fluffy. I don’t do it to full-dissolving of the sugar stage cause I like a little texture in my shortbread. S’up to you.

20130120-142656.jpg

Add the cornflower, kind of cutting it into the butter and sugar mix with the sharp side of a spatula.

Add the fine zest of two lemons (unwaxed) if you fancy, at this stage. I fancied. Bloody love lemon, me.

Add the plain flour and do the same…for as long as that works. You may need to get your hands in there at some point to encourage the final bits of flour to join the party.

20130120-142741.jpg

Should look like the above – kind of breadcrumby but reluctantly able to stick together if pressured. Like some relationships.

20130120-142931.jpg

On a board or your bench, press some of the mix together till it binds and kind of smoothens. Use a cutter or a knife to cut shapes.

You can totally do the whole pressing the full mix into a slice tin and cooking thing, but I thought these would have more chance in ShitOven if biscuit-sized, as would take less time to cook.

If you use a tin, fork-print the whole lot and cook for about 50-60 mins or so 140C oven, sprinkling with caster sugar straight away, then slicing into shapes when cooled a bit.

20130120-143013.jpg

Voila. Shortbread rounds.

I covered mine with foil for the first half hour of the 35 mins cooking time. You shouldn’t have to.

20130120-143301.jpg

I checked after ten minutes. The incineration was already underway. Fucking oven.

20130120-143347.jpg

Sacrificial shortbread. Utterly ruined after 35 mins in the oven, only 5 of which were spent without a foil protection. Stupids.

Below are the survivors, dusted in caster sugar and cooling on a rack. Tasty.

I am in a terrible mood now, of course.

20130120-143544.jpg

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Easy Shortbread (Assuming you don’t have a ShitOven)

  1. narf77 says:

    Instagram makes your dog look like she belongs to Audrey Hepburn in a 50’s movie! Shit oven R.I.P. (a minutes silence for it’s ill tempered stuff-ups and genuine malice whenever an act of “cooking” was attempted…) Shortbread is (as we Aussies say) “a piece of piss”…so long as you don’t skimp and use good quality butter you are “In loik Flynn”! Did you know that Shit Oven had an antipodean relative? I do…its called Shit bbq and it burned the base of my invented boozy oatwell slice (a mix of oat slice, the rum soaked dried fruit that I was supposed to be using for eccles cakes and the topping of a bakewell…) and almost had me out there like Basil Fawlty with a rake giving it what for I was so miffed! I LOVE looking at the packets of your ingredients :). Doesn’t McDougalls plain flour make you want to bake that cute little gingerbread man? Obviously shit oven would turn him West Indian but whatchagonnado?
    I WAS a little upset not to see the cornflour :(…I have been hanging out to see a bag of cornflour in someones food blog for ages now and the severe dearth of the stuff makes me think that you foodies are giving it the cold shoulder…as a bolshie of old I feel the need to stand up for the plainer packaged ingredients and shout for their equal viewing time! 😉
    BUGGER! I was counting on beaters with wiggly beaters being able to counteract the behind bars action with butter…I was going to buy a handbeater with them! Looks like it is back to the old drawing board (and passing the bowl with a wooden spoon to Steve to rotate furiously 😉 ). I can see you “encouraging” the flour with your fingers 😉 I just got a flashback to “Posh nosh” when Minty was “encouraging” the stuffing into a chook! I love the little shortbread finger in the top left hand corner…almost forgotten but entirely and emminently stand alone the most tea dippingly favourite way I have to eat shortbread 🙂 (I’ll bet the poor little sod burned black as Lemmies Ace of spades 😉 )…yup… I was right! Shit oven is obviously partial to savouries…might even be Irish as it apparently hates Scottish nosh too! Might be a bolshie IRA oven! If so, be VERY careful when you are disconnecting it… ;).

    • b-kom says:

      ShitOven’s demise shall be celebrated with a post of its own, for sure…..

      I’m afraid the cornflour is in a v basic black box, most disappointing!

      • narf77 says:

        NEVER! Cornflour shall remain exciting no matter WHAT accoutraments it is forced to be clothed in. I look forwards to the post about shit ovens demise. I have a bottle of bubbly ruminating in the fridge just waiting to see that post…Steve says hurry up and get a new oven, being teetotal for the new year has knobs on it! 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: