Crisp, beautifully short and buttery, this recipe is based on Delia Smith’s Complete Illustrated Cookery Course and produces delicious shortbread rounds. The secret to good shortbread – like shortcrust pastry – is to avoid handling it too much and to roll out the dough thinly.
This shortbread recipe only contains three ingredients and follows an easy ratio to remember of 3: 2: 1 (flour: butter: sugar). Best of all, it doesn’t require any expensive or complicated kitchen equipment to make.
Makes about 10 biscuits
- 110g butter, at room temperature and cut into cubes
- 50g caster sugar
- 175g plain flour, sifted
- Extra caster sugar, for dusting
- Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 2, 300°F / 150°C / 130°C fan.
- Lightly grease a baking sheet.
- Place the butter in a large mixing bowl, and using a wooden spoon, beat it to a soft consistency. Then beat in the sugar, followed by the sifted flour.
- Still using the wooden spoon, start to bring the mixture together until it resembles breadcrumbs. To finish it off, tip the mixture onto a clean surface and lightly bring it together with your hands. Knead it briefly to form a dough with a consistent texture.
- Press the dough into a disc with your hands and transfer it to a board lightly dusted with caster sugar. With a rolling pin, quickly and lightly roll it out to about 3mm thick, dusting the rolling pin with sugar if necessary.
- Use a 7.5cm (3 inch) fluted cutter to cut the biscuits out, then arrange them on the baking sheet and bake on a medium / high shelf in the oven for between 20 – 30 minutes. The biscuits should still be pale in colour – keep an eye on them while they are in the oven and remove them before they turn golden.
- Cool the biscuits on a wire rack, dust them with some caster sugar, and store in an airtight container to keep them crisp.