Recipe 25 – Shrewsbury Biscuits

18th January 2012

Home alone (well almost – husband out rugby coaching, daughter in bedroom doing French homework and son, who has injured his knee so no rugby training for him, is on his Xbox, so basically it’s me and the dog!) – so thought I’d do some baking as I know hubby will want to watch Heston and Baker Boys when he comes home, so Sky+ on to record!

So, quick flick through (if that’s possible) the ‘Bible’ to decide what to bake – Shrewsbury Biscuits it is.

Preheat oven and lightly grease 3 (yes 3!!!) baking trays.  According to Mary this recipe should make 24 biscuits.

For once I decided to weigh all the ingredients out beforehand instead of rushing around to find them as and when needed.  Butter and sugar into the bowl and creamed together.  For this recipe you only needed the egg yolk, so egg separated (white is used later on) and yolk added to mixture.  Used a spatula to scrape the side of the bowls down and carried on with this to beat the egg in.  It was surprising how easy it was to do with a spatula, something I’ve never thought of before.

Flour sieved into the mixture and then it was time to grate the rind of a lemon.  It’s amazes me how my dog knows when I get the grater out of the cupboard.  He’s down the end of the hallway, but as soon as the grater is put on the worktop, he’s there in the kitchen by my side.  Sorry, no cheese tonight, just lemon rind!!  Anyway lemon rind added and mixed in along with the flour.  The mixture resembled ‘crumble’ and I was very tempted to try some!

Last add the currants and stir through.  Not a great lover of currants, they remind me of rabbit droppings, which reminds me of when the children were younger …. one Easter Sunday when the children were about 4 and 2 years old, we had put their Easter eggs downstairs and in the morning they went down to find them.  A few seconds later my son came back up the stairs saying that the Easter bunny had done a ‘poo’ by his egg!  We had sprinkled some currants round the eggs to make it look as though the ‘bunny’ had really visited.  My daughter didn’t believe him, so went downstairs where she promptly sat down and ate the ‘poo’, much to my young son’s disgust.  Even today (and he’s now 14) he reminds me of this story and says how wicked we were!

Anyway back to baking – after adding the currants had to add 2 tablespoons of milk to bring the dough together.  After bringing the dough together with my hands turned the dough onto a lightly floured board and kneaded gently.  Next, roll the mixture out until it was 5mm thick.  I’m hopeless with getting the thickness of dough etc right and thanks to my wonderful husband I am now the proud owner of a Joseph rolling pin which has little wheels on the side that you can change so you can get your pastry/dough the right thickness.  

Dough rolled out and Mary says to use a 6cm fluted cutter, but unfortunately I don’t have one this size, so it was a decision do I make them slightly smaller or larger.  I went for the smaller, but on hindsight I think I should have gone for the larger cutter.  Cut the first 10 out and then re-rolled the dough for the next lot.  The third time I had to roll the mixture out it was becoming a bit sticky and some of  the currants had split, but in all I made 26 biscuits.

Into the oven they went for 8 minutes.  They were then removed from the oven and brushed with the beaten egg white (which I had lightly whisked) that I had kept back from earlier.  A light sprinkling with caster sugar and back into the oven for another 5 minutes.  When lightly golden out they came.

Onto a wire rack to cool and then into an airtight container – not that many did as once hubby was back from rugby he tasted quite a few and so did the children once they emerged from their bedrooms!

A very tasty biscuit with a slight hint of lemon.  Lovely.


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