I'm a sucker for shortbread, particularly the cheap, super sweet, shop bought stuff with sugar on top that show sup everywhere around christmas. I love it. I can eat it by the packet and because of this I never buy it. I know if I were to buy it I would eat it all.
To fulfil my craving for shortbread I decided to make my own. These are not quite like the shop version, which might be a good thing. I'm not sure.
The original recipe claims you can use rice flour, corn flour, or potato starch as the additional starch. I used corn flour but I think I would have preferred to use something else as I'm not much of a fan of the texture of cornflour. Rice flour apparently gives the biscuits more crunch, which I would have enjoyed.
As far as the actual shortness of the biscuit is concerned this are definitely spot on. They're super flake-y, and if you made them without nougat they would just fall apart in your mouth. I like the crunch the nougat and nuts brings but everyone is different.
This recipe calls for super soft butter, I softened mine in the microwave as it's freezing at the moment and I doubted that it would soften at room temperature. Apparently a tiny amount of melting isn't a problem but don't over do it!
Cranberry nougat shortbread
Adapted from Tartine by
Makes about 36 biscuits
- 225g (1 cup + 2 tablespoons) very soft unsalted butter
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 255g (1 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons) plain flour
- 75g (1/2 cup + 1 tablespoons) corn, rice, or potato flour
- 200g (7oz) soft cranberry nougat
- 70g (1/3 cup) granulated sugar
- 55g (1/4 cup) granulated sugar, extra
Preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F), grease a line a 15cm by 25cm (6" by 10") baking tin.
In a small bowl, sift together the flour and chosen starch. Remove 1/4 of a cup and place in a small bowl with the nougat.
Rub the nougat and flour together with your hands until lumps to size of peas form. Set aside.
Place the butter in a separate mixing bowl. The butter should be very soft, about the consistency of mayonnaise or whipped cream. Add the salt and mix well with a wooden spoon so that the salt dissolved completely. Add first lot of sugar to the butter and mi until just combined, then add the flour and mix until a smooth dough forms. Finally, add the nougat pieces and mix until just combined.
Pat the dough evenly into the prepared baking dish. The dough should be no more than 1.5cm (2/3") thick. Bake until the top is lightly browned, about 30 minutes. The middle of the shortbread should remain fairly light. Let cool on a rack until warm to touch.
Sprinkle the remaining sugar over the shortbread, tilting the dish so that the sugar fully and evenly coats the top. Tip out any excess sugar. With a thin, sharp knife, cut the short bread into rectangular fingers about 1cm (1/2") wide and 5cm (2") long. It is best to cut the shortbread while it is still warm. Cool completely before removing from the baking dish,
The first biscuits may be difficult to remove but the remainder should come out easily. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.