Monday, 5 May 2008

Vanilla Shorties

I love shortbread and find it a wonderful base recipe for trying different flavours. It makes a lovely crisp little biscuit and is so simple and rewarding to make. The idea of adding vanilla is not new but making a biscuit with vanilla seeds vanilla sugar and then adding vanilla icing intrigued me greatly. A really intense vanilla flavour was the natural outcome and yet it remained delicate and not at all overwhelming. A perfect little bite and one I will repeat often. I found the recipe on a lovely blog by LisaRenee called 'Little Bits'.
The recipe was the same basic recipe I use for shortbread. It called for vanilla flavoured confectioner's sugar. I was unsure if this was our icing sugar or caster sugar although I have a feeling it is the former. I did not have vanilla flavoured icing sugar so I used the vanilla flavoured caster sugar I had. This is my version of the recipe.

Vanilla Shorties

225gms/8oz soft butter
100gms/4oz vanilla bean infused caster sugar
1 vanilla pod
225gms/8oz plain flour
100gms/4oz cornflour

Preheat oven to 150.C/300°F/Gas 2

Cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and the seeds from one vanilla pod and beat until smooth.
Add the flour and cornflour and mix to a dough. Using your hands at the end to combine is the easiest option as it is quite crumby
Roll out until about 1/2 cm thick
Cut into shapes of your choice
Bake at for about 25 minutes (better to under bake then over bake), or until bottoms just begin to brown.
Cool for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

When biscuits have cooled spread them with a thin layer of vanilla icing.

Vanilla Icing

225gms/8oz icing sugar sugar
2 tsp cream and 2 teasps milk combined
¼ teaspoon vanilla paste
Combine in a small bowl, adding more milk to reach desired consistency.

Makes about 24 biscuits

The oven temperature was a lot cooler than I would normally bake shortbread but LisaRene advised this to keep the shortbread pale. It worked very well and the biscuits were still lovely and crisp.


Vicky (victoria sponge) said...

So pretty and delicate. They look lovely in their little row!
Vicky xxx

Elle said...

What sweet little cookies, and so simple!

Anonymous said...

So cute, love the shape.

vonsachsen said...

Oh, Granny, you can´t help but tempting us all the time:) I loooove shortbread but I´m somewhat unwilling to bake it as often as I want to eat it. I´m seeing Semlan this weekend and then we are heading the English Shop and BUY some Scottish shortbread. Oh, I´m really looking forward to it. In the meantime I´ll just lurk around your blog and lick the screen with a cup of tea ;P

Kelly-Jane said...

Shortbread is lovely - and iced shortbread yum yum! Looks great.

Anonymous said...

Yum,yum - lovely wee biccies.
AnnaBanana Xxx.

LisaRene said...

Look how adorable your cookies are! All so perfect!

If I am correct, confectioner's sugar, powdered sugar and icing sugar are the same thing. Very fine, "baby powder" in texture.

Glad you found the low oven temperature to be successful. I do see many shortbread recipes that use a 350 oven but from all that I have read the temperature should be very low as you don't want the shortbread to brown.

Let me know if you experiment with other flavor combinations!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

They look so cute! And I bet they were delicious too, I had also seen them on little bits and they also caught my eye! I have a very similar cookie cuter, makes cookies so adorable!

Maria said...

Brenda these look so lovely!!


Rhyleysgranny said...

Thank you all for your lovely comments.:)
Lisarene I am glad you liked I will let you know other combis. They really taste lovely