Delicious iced shortbread biscuits
A real family favourite recipe.
I’ve been in a real baking mood recently. It’s been a combination of a certain little girl turning 5-years-old and being at home during the school half-term to enjoy quality time with Olivia and William.
As chance would have it, it was around this time that I was challenged by Renshaw Baking to come up with a fun family recipe that we could all get involved with.
Considering that one of my goals during my time off was to make home-made treats for a classroom of children (plus teachers), it seemed the perfect opportunity to turn this task into some family fun.
Olivia and I pondered between making cake pops for the first time ever or making biscuits for the first time ever (we always tend to make cupcakes and we fancied doing something slightly different). We eventually plumped for biscuits and were sent 2 boxes of ready to roll icing in various colours to help us with our creations.
This is what we came up with – delicious iced shortbread biscuits. It’s not a mind-blowing or unique recipe, but it is simple (which means anyone can make them and it’s hard to get it disastrously wrong) and tasty. The creativity for this recipe comes with shaping the biscuits and the decorating.
Our recipe made 34 biscuits in total, but depending on the size of your cutters, you might be able to make even more or slightly less.
What you will need
- 250g / 8oz of butter
- 1teng / 4oz of caster sugar
- 360g / 12oz plain flour
You will also need some cutters to cut out your biscuit shapes (we used people and vehicle shaped plastic cutters), some ready to roll icing (ideally in a variety of colours) to top your biscuits with, and some icing sugar and water to mix together into a paste which will stick the icing to the biscuits.
What you need to do
- Heat the oven to 190°C / 375°F / Gas Mark 5.
- Mix the butter and caster sugar together until the mixture is smooth.
- Add the flour and mix it in until it becomes a smooth paste.
- Get your hands into the bowl and knead the dough slightly to make sure it all sticks together and as little as possible is left around the sides of the bowl.
- Turn out the biscuit dough onto a kitchen worktop that has just been sprinkled with flour.
- Grab your rolling pin and roll out the dough until it is about 1cm or so thick.
- If, like me, you spend 20 minutes searching for a rolling pin and then realise you don’t have one, try to flatten the dough as best you can with the palm of your hand or any improvised tools.
- Once your dough is at your desired thickness, cut out your biscuits using cutters and lay them onto a pre-greased baking tray
- Once you have cut out as many biscuits as is physically possible, cook your biscuits in the oven for about 20 minutes.
- Once baked, turn them out onto a wire rack to cool down.
- Once your biscuits have cooled it’s time to get icing!
Icing your biscuits
- Mix up a thick paste of icing sugar and water.
- Pick some ready to roll icing with which to begin decorating your biscuits and roll it out to your desired thickness (we managed to find a small rolling pin by this point – yay!)
- Using the same cutters that you used for the biscuit shapes, cut out shapes in the ready to roll icing. For example, we would cut out an entire figure from the icing using the cutter, but then cut out specific parts (e.g. dress, beard or trousers) to stick onto individual biscuits.
- Get your children involved in the icing part of the biscuits too by letting them sculpt their own shapes out of icing.
- Vary how your biscuits will look by using more than one colour of icing. I used 4 or 5 different colours in total.
- Spread some icing sugar paste onto the parts of each biscuit where you want to stick the icing. This will stick the icing to the biscuit once it all dries.
- When they are dry, stand back and admire (or get stuck in and eat them up!)
The biscuits turned out well and both Olivia and I enjoyed putting our own personal stamp on them by way of the icing (William had gotten bored by this point and was only interested in when he could eat them). It’s definitely given me confidence to do this more and even try something even more adventurous in the future. Baking is so much fun with children and I love seeing Olivia and William get ‘hands-on’ with it.
Although this recipe is relatively quick and simple, I hope Olivia and William will look back on this memory with a real fondness, as the moment their mum became confident in the kitchen and started introducing lots of baking fun into their lives. It’s certainly going to be one my most cherished baking memories from my children’s childhoods for this very reason (I’m adamant we will do lots more of this… and from scratch, not a packet). We might even make more of them this coming weekend because… well, why not?!
And, of course, I’m pleased to report that the biscuits were a hit with the children I made them for. I won’t ever have to be worried about my baking abilities when I have to participate in school bake sales from now on!
Please note: this post has been produced in collaboration with Renshaw Baking.