I wanted a very simple recipe for some biscuits, or cookies. Of course many biscuits are easy to make, particularly shortbread. So I decided on some shortbread, but with the flavours of walnuts and ginger to enhance the experiece.
I adapted a recipe by Delia Smith, which looked good. The main adaptation was to include some crystallised ginger, which I just love. I also converted the ingredients into metric and slightly adjusted where necessary.
The recipe is very easy indeed and doesn’t have too many ingredients. It doesn’t take too long either, 90 minutes is enough time to make the dough, chill it and then bake the biscuits.
Although the recipe calls for ground walnuts they can be difficult to source. But it is easy to grind walnuts, in a food processor. You just have to be careful to pulse the processor, checking all the while to ensure the walnuts don’t turn into a paste. One way of preventing that is to add a little sugar into the walnuts, that will absorb any oil released during processing. That is what I did for mine, using a little of the sugar I had weighed out for the recipe.
I finely chopped my crystallised ginger, from the large sugary cubes it is usually sold in.
As I mentioned, this is such an easy recipe. My biscuits baked perfectly and had the ginger pieces fairly well distributed between them.
Once the biscuits had cooled on the trays for about 5 minutes I transferred them to a wire rack to finish cooling.
Then I sampled them. What a treat they were. The shortbread biscuit was so tender, almost to the point of melting on the tongue. The biscuits had a lovely nutty flavour too and then just a little hit of ginger when encountering one of the small chewy pieces.
They were simply perfect with a nice cup of tea. I imagine the same with coffee. I also think they could be crumbled over some ice-cream for a lovely dessert.
Another very simple recipe is this for shortbread
Walnut & Crystallised Ginger BiscuitsCourse: Biscuits, CookiesDifficulty: Easy
175g(1 cup + 3 tbsp, based on scooping packed flour into a 250ml cup) plain flour
50g(5 tbsp) rice flour
50g(1/4 cup) caster sugar
50g(1/2 cup) ground walnuts – see note below
112g(1 stick) softened unsalted butter
good pinch of salt
25g(2 1/2 tbsp) finely chopped crystallised ginger
- Place the butter and sugar into a large bowl and cream them together until light and fluffy.
- Mix the plain flour, rice flour and salt together and sift onto the butter.
- Stir the mixture together until almost combined and clumping a little.
- Add the walnuts and sprinkle over the ginger, then continue mixing until well distributed.
- Use your hands to squeeze the mixture into a dough. Work it for a minute or so.
- Form the dough into a rectangle or disc and wrap in plastic then chill for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 150C/130C Fan/300F.
- Line a couple of bakng trays with parchment paper.
- Roll the dough out, on a lightly floured surface, to a square of about 7 inches(18 cm), or a circle 8 inches(20 cm) diameter.
- Use a cookie cutter of about 1 3/4 inches(4.5 cm) to cut out rounds and place them on a baking tray, re-roll the pastry to use it all.
- Bake the biscuits for 45 minutes, until they have coloured lightly, then remove them from the oven and leave on the trays for about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the biscuits to a wire rack to cool completely. Then store in an airtight container, until it is time to enjoy them.
- If you can’t find ground walnut you can process walnuts in a food processor, and add about 2 tsp of the sugar from the recipe to prevent the nuts grinding into a paste.