Saturday, 16 January 2010

Go Shorty

A bit of home baking on the weekend is always a good idea, something to entertain the children and educate them about food a little, while providing a lovely treat at the same time.  Shortbread is a wonderful thing to bake, so simple yet so rewarding.  Because it contains so few ingredients, the preparation time is minimal and a mere fifteen minutes in the oven is bearable for even the most fractious child (or parent!).

Of course butter (and it must be butter when you make shortbread) is not a health food, but the oats I've added to my recipe, plus the introduction of unrefined sugar, with its trace nutrients and minerals, allow me to feel better about this snack than some of the other 'kiddy snacks' around.  OK, so it's not an apple this time, but it's not shortbread every time and that's what matters.  Find a balance, it's the weekend...

Brown Sugar Shortbread

60g porridge oats
190g plain flour
200g salted butter
75g light muscovado sugar

Put the porridge oats into the blender and whizz to a fine powder.  Stir into the flour and set aside. Cream the butter and sugar together, then work in the flour-and-oats mixture to form a crumbly dough.  Press into a 20x30cm rectangular baking tin (mine is non-stick, but I still wipe it round with my wonderful Cake Release).  Mark into squares or bars with a sharp knife, then prick holes in each  section with a skewer.  Bake at 180°c for fifteen minutes, until the surface is golden.  Remove to a rack to cool (careful, it's rather fragile at this stage!), then break into biscuits once cooled and firm.  Put the kettle on, make a pot of tea (shortbread's best friend) and put your feet up, that's an order!
Cath xx

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