29 Aug 2014

Scottish Lavender Shortbread

I've been having haggis cravings lately.
No, it's not a sign that I'm pregnant with a Scottish baby.
(For that matter, The Man is not Scottish anyway)
So it might be a sign that I'm ready to celebrate a very early Burns Night or just wanting haggis season to start now.

Of course, there's no such thing as a "haggis season", but The Man has decided that it's too hot to eat haggis these days.
Nonsense. I'd like to take him to Savoie (in the French Alps) and we'll see if those Savoyards (people from Savoie) stop eating tartiflette and raclette (local delicacies based on melted cheese, potatoes, charcuterie and all things fat) in summer!
 Whatever (yes, I am a rebellious teenager)And I'm enjoying the anticipation almost just as much (Mainly I'm secretly hoping for a cold wave next weekend to justify a we're-having-haggis-for-dinner revolution).
Until then, I've managed to bring a little taste of Scotland to our tea breaks.
recipe scottish shortbread

Lavender Scottish Shortbread

I fell in love with shortbread when I visited Scotland last year and tasted real artisan shortbread, which is very different from industrial shortbread.
You could flavour this shortbread with many different things (orange zest, dried cranberries, chocolate chunks, etc) but I love the delicate aromas the lavender brings to it, for a slightly posh version of this lovely traditional Scottish biscuit.
As it's a very buttery tasting biscuit, make sure you use good-quality butter, so you get the best results.

200g plain flour (+ extra for dusting)
125g cold unsalted butter, diced
25g caster Sugar
25g lavender sugar

Method to make lavender shortbread

1/ Preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F/gas 3. 

2/ Mix the flour and sugars together in a mixing bowl. 

3/ Rub in the butter with your thumb and forefinger, squash, pat and push it into a dough. 

4/ Transfer to a baking sheet lined with baking parchment (or onto a baking silicone mat), and without kneading it, pat it down flat until it's 1cm thick. 

5/ Cut out shapes with a cookie cutter (square, round, or finger-shaped. If it splits or tears, just press it back together). Try and work the dough as little as possible to ensure it will be a short as possible and make very crumbly shortbread.
If you like, score lines on the shortbread so that you can click the biscuits off into pieces later

6/ Sprinkle over some caster sugar, and bake in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes until it's a light golden colour. Leave to cool completely before serving or storing in a tin.

Recipe adapted from Jamie Oliver

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