Shortbread is a type of biscuit traditionally made from one part white sugar, two parts butter, and three parts flour (by weight). The use of plain white (wheat) flour is common today, and other ingredients like ground rice or cornflour are sometimes added to alter the texture. Also, modern recipes often deviate from the pure three ingredients by splitting the sugar portion into equal parts granulated sugar and icing sugar (powdered sugar) and many further add a portion of salt.Shortbread is baked at a low temperature to avoid browning. When cooked, it is nearly white, or a light golden brown. It may be sprinkled with more sugar while cooling. It may even be crumbly before cooled, but will become firmer after cooling.

These crisp shortbread biscuits are extremely easy to make and have very few ingredients. They are not low in calories, but they make a delicious treat at special times of the year. Shortbread biscuits can be made in a variety of shapes. Whatever the shape you decide to use – the taste remains the same…..meltingly light and buttery. These make ideal gifts, and as they are made with butter, they last for quite a while. Pack them up in an attractive box, tin or bag and gift someone.

This recipe has been adopted from a old newspaper clipping which I used to collect as a teenager but never had the time to make it. During those time it was a fascination to collect the clippings and write in my Diary which I used to cook in free time. But the collection becomes so huge that it becomes impossible to mark which one to cook and which one to skip. Career , Marriage, Motherhood had taken a lot of of time  and these treasured recipes have never made it to my To Do List……But an accidental encounter which introduced me to the world of Blogging opened this Pandora Box of Recipes. I am glad that I came to know this initiatives of Srivalli ofhttp://cooking4allseasons.blogspot.in/2013/10/cooking-from-cookbook-challenge-for.html where we have to cook from cookbook, television shows and newspaper clippings, family recipes and share with the world.

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Cumin Shortbread Biscuits
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Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven at 180 C.
  2. Prepare a square baking tin by lining it with a parchment paper.
  3. Keep the butter in the freezer for at least half an hour.
  4. Meanwhile whisk together the flour and salt.
  5. In a separate bowl add the sugar and cumin seeds.  Rub the sugar and cumin seeds together for couple of minutes. This will give a cumin flavoured scent to your biscuits.
  6. Mix the flour and sugar cumin mixture together in a large bowl, and then rub in the butter - as if you were making shortcrust pastry. Use the tips of your fingers and ensure that all the butter has been rubbed in -- it should resemble sand like texture.
  7. Then start to knead the paste, pushing it together to form a smooth dough - the heat of your hands whilst kneading helps it form.
  8. Roll out the shortbread dough and using a biscuit or cookie cutter or with the use ofscale, mark it like rectangles about 1/4" in thickness and mark them.. Place them on a well greased baking tray or cookie sheet.
  9. Now cover the tin with a cling film and place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.Bake it directly from the freezer for 25 to 30 minutes. or until they are pale and golden - but NOT brown.
  10. They will still feel very soft when out of the oven. Cut them out into equal size rectangles as soon as it it out of the oven with a very sharp knife
  11. Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight tin or container.
Recipe Notes

NB: These will last for about 10 to 14 days in a cool, dry and dark pantry. They can also be frozen with great results!

Linking this recipes to Srivalli ofhttp://cooking4allseasons.blogspot.in/2013/10/cooking-from-cookbook-challenge-for.html

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