Forget about your chocolate chip cookies or your ginger snaps, for me the classic biscuit is the all butter shortbread. I think that the only time I baked shortbread would have been when I was 19, so it was definitely time for another attempt. My lovely wife suggested that I use Paul Hollywood’s recipe as apparently it is very easy and foolproof.
There does appear to be a classic ratio of ingredients for shortbread, 1 part sugar, 2 parts butter and 3 parts flour. For example, you would use 100g of caster sugar, 200g of butter and 300g of flour. Note, that is a lot of butter. Where Paul Hollywood differs slightly is that he uses 200g plain flour and 100g corn flour.
Using softened butter throw everything into a mixer and wait until you have a breadcrumb type mixture. Bring this together with your hands, kneading it only a little, and then roll it out between two sheets of grease proof paper. Leave it to chill for 30 minutes and then cut into shapes and bake until the edges are just starting to turn brown. As you can see I used a couple of different round cutters and a Christmas tree shape as it is that time of the year.
The end result is absolutely perfect shortbread biscuits. I took some to my Mum who said they were very good. It is very satisfying when a recipe works how it should, and the baked goods taste how they should. Definitely one to try again in the future, although I might add some nuts or lemon zest to make the biscuits a little more exotic.