Thursday, 12 December 2013

Advent Post #12: A Special Secret Santa! Festive Shortbread Biscuits Recipe

When planning family weekends, making a Secret Santa present for Jamie Cullum's dad was definitely not on the list! Secret Santa 'events' are planned and carried out in many, many offices and workplaces nowadays. It takes the pressure off buying a present for everyone and often turns into a bit of fun with jokey and slightly risky gifts that you wouldn't be brave enough to give with your name attached to them!
To cut a long story short, my sister was the lucky recipient of the little slip of paper with said jazz singer's dad's name on it - he's chairman of the company that she works for! To add to the melee and confusion, the gift had to be homemade!
So... like any talented, crafty, cooking family - we opted for homemade biscuits! With the help of my kids(!), here we have the masterpiece itself!
Festive biscuits - just biscuit!

Mixing it up a little with the addition of sweetie glass!


The finished item - Bath Abbey at it's finest! (Or baffabbi as it was fondly known throughout the making process!)
I'm sure he'll be as proud as punch with the efforts made - well I hope so! :)
Here's the recipe for anyone who wants to give it a try!
300g plain flour
175g butter, cubed
1 level tsp ground ginger
1 level tsp ground cinnamon
100g golden syrup
24 clear coloured fruit sweets
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4. Sieve flour, cinnamon and ginger together. Rub in the butter until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs.
  2. Add the golden syrup and mix with a knife until lumpy. Then, use your hands to mix the mixture to form a dough.
  3. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for 30 mins.
  4. While the dough is chilling, break the sweets into very small  pieces - a pestle and mortar is ideal.
  5. On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough out to the thickness of a pound coin.
  6. Cut into shapes as needed. Gather left over dough and roll out again.
  7. Place on a baking tray. Cut out any 'windows' from the shapes and sprinkle a generous amount of crushed sweets into each 'window'.
  8. Bake for 15 mins - the sweets should have melted and the biscuits should be lightly browned. Leave too cool on the tray for a minimum of 10 mins then remove with a fish slice. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  9. Enjoy!
Adapted from a recipe in Morrisons instore magazine.