Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Ginger Shortbread

I really thought the orange and cinnamon shortbread was going to be my final shortbread bake - for this Christmas season anyway. But somehow, I found that the chilli and all the other flavoured shortbreads just weren't quite enough - where was ginger in the equation? Friends recently had an Open House to show off the beautiful home they have now finished building. You can find out more and see some fabulous pictures on the Pentiddy Housebuild 2013 blog - the interior is just how I imagine a hobbit hole to be.

Although it wasn't actually raining, I felt a warming spice was needed, so I baked some ginger and white chocolate shortbread biscuits and took them along. I also sent a box off to a friend as a New Year's present. These were the first biscuits I've ever sent by post, so I was relieved to find they arrived in one piece.

Just before Christmas (as in Christmas Eve!), Wilko sent me a delightful "Home Made" vintage  cookie press, which also had "Baked with Love" and "Eat Me" options. It arrived a little late in the day for Christmas biscuits, but I was keen to try it out, having exhausted the Christmas stars, hearts and snowflakes.

The stamp worked really well. The rubber moulds are interchangeable and can be washed separately as needed. They fit well on the handle and are not too difficult to remove. My only complaint was that, although there was a hole in the handle for a piece of string, there was no string supplied, so I had to hunt around for something appropriate. I had to dip the mould in flour between each stamp to avoid sticking, but I was working with a particularly sticky dough. I should really have taken a picture before they went into the oven as the crisp lettering in the dough looked really good. Sadly, the writing didn't hold through the baking process and the words could not be deciphered. Note to self: this stamp does not work with shortbread. I also managed to overdo the 2nd batch, which was a bit frustrating. However, the biscuits tasted fabulous and the lumps of ginger gave a welcome chewy texture and were as warming and spicy as I'd hoped.

This is how I made:

Crystallised Ginger Shortbread Biscuits

  • Softened 50g of good quality white chocolate by putting it in the mixing bowl and placing it on the storage heater for ten minutes.
  • Added 170g of unsalted butter cubed and left to soften.
  • Creamed the butter and chocolate with 75g golden caster sugar until pale in colour and fluffy in texture.
  • Added 50g finely chopped crystallised ginger and creamed some more.
  • Sifted in 175g plain flour (half wholemeal, half white), 80g brown rice flour and a pinch of pink Himalayan rock salt.
  • Stirred until incorporated, then formed into a ball and left in my cold kitchen to firm up for half an hour.
  • Rolled out to about 6mm thickness and stamped out 28 circles. I then stamped them with the "Eat Me" stamp, which I had to dip in flour each time to prevent it sticking.
  • Left to firm up in my cold kitchen for 15 minutes.
  • Baked for 9 mins at 180°C until just golden.
Thanks to Wilko for sending me a cookie press to try out. There was no requirement to write a positive review. As always, all opinions are my own.

20 comments:

  1. Happy new year Choclette! I love the flavour of ginger, a nice and sweet way to start again in January.
    It has been quite a busy Christmas and new year for me so I am enjoying some peace and quiet now and have more time for blogging and for myself too!
    I am sure your friend appreciated your biscuits! A home made present is worth much more than anything bought in shops especially if edible :-)

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    1. Thank you Alida - I'm with you all the way :)

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  2. these biscuits sounds wonderful as does the hobbit hole - and love the stamp - will be interested to see if you find biscuits it works with that don't bake out the impression

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    1. I expect the type you can hang on your Christmas tree will work Johanna. I must try and find a recipe as I really do want them to work.

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  3. Oh yum, Choclette - they sound delicious - I do so love crystallised ginger. Have added to my "must bake" list, thanks!
    It might be worth popping the impressed biscuits in the freezer for 10 mins before baking - this may help them hold the lettering better.
    Vohn x

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    1. Thanks Vohn. Ginger lovers unite. The freezer might have helped - trouble is I never have any room in there.

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  4. Love ginger shortbread .This looks really super fabulous...U got such a nice present for your christmas gal ..

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    1. Thank you, I was very lucky - always need lots of chocolate, Christmas or no Christmas ;-)

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  5. I love shortbread, and I love ginger - therefore I reckon I would be bowled over by this.

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    1. Thank you, ginger biscuits are one of my favourites.

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  6. Look at that house! Oops, I mean, look at that shortbread! Have you seen the latest Hobbit movie yet? I went, much against my will, and really enjoyed it. I promise I haven't forgotten about our project... will come back to you soon!

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    1. I've seen the Hobbit twice now for my sins. CT and I went before Christmas and then had to take my mother to see it after Christmas - luckily I enjoyed it and was happy to see it again.

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  7. Great method for melting chocolate :-) although I'm sure my kids would be dipping their fingers in if I left mine on the radiator. Great choice of spice - one of my favourites.

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    1. Thanks Angela, it works surprisingly well - as long as I do it when CT isn't about or I'd probably experience the same problem as you ;-)

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  8. Wow, ginger and shortbread are two of my favourite things in the world. These sound amazing

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    1. Thanks for visiting Jane and commenting too. It sounds as though you need to make these - soon ;-)

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  9. I am always ready for ginger cookies. These cookies look lovely.

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  10. Just yesterday I was thinking about what to do with my leftover ginger and thought I could do some shortbread. What do you think about ginger and mint shortbread?

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    1. You can never have too much ginger shortbread Chris. Mint doesn't seem an obvious choice as ginger is warming and mint is cooking, but look forward to seeing whatever you make :)

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