This whole book malarkey has crept up on me. It seems like forever that I’ve been explaining that the book isn’t out just yet, but soon, honestly soon. And then here I am preparing for the book being out very soon indeed – next week in fact. (The 17th to be precise.) Huge thanks to everyone who has pre-ordered (I’m hoping it’s not just my Dad?) and if you want to try before you buy here’s a recipe from the book just for you. It’s from the ‘Presents’ chapter – lots of recipes for giving to those you love. Or keeping for yourself.
If you want to read about the book and find out what’s in it have a click here. If you are veggie (or thinking of buying for a veggie) and want to know if the book is suitable have a click here. (It is.) Or if you’re a gung ho type of a person and just fancy ordering it then click here. Oh and if you want to see me in all my post natal glory then tune into Loose Women on Wednesday 9th at 12.30pm on ITV.
Three years ago: Teacher’s pet chocolate and hazelnut oaty biscuits and Spelt loaf
Four years ago: Restorative chicken and leek risotto
Lemon button biscuits
- 225g salted butter, softened
- 170g caster sugar
- Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
- 450g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
- 1 large egg
Line 3 baking sheets with non-stick greaseproof paper. Cream together the butter, sugar and lemon zest until light and creamy using an electric mixer or wooden spoon. Adding a little at a time, gently beat in the flour until well combined. Mix in the egg to bind the mixture. Wrap in cling film and chill for 1½ hours.
Roll the shortbread out on a lightly floured surface until about 3/4cm thick using a floured rolling pin. Using a 7cm-wide circular cookie cutter, cut circles from the dough. Place the circles on the lined baking sheets about 2cm apart.
Then find something that is just smaller than the cutter that you used – either a smaller cutter or a glass that is at least 6cm-wide – and lightly press down on the centre of each button to make an indent, to represent the inner circle of the button. Do not press hard enough to cut through the dough. Use a skewer or the end of a straw to make 4 little holes in the middle of each biscuit in a grid fashion and then chill on the baking sheets for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 6. Bake the biscuits for 10–12 minutes in the middle of the oven until just starting to brown at the edges. Remove the buttons from the trays and leave to cool on a wire rack. Place a few in a gift bag and tie with a pretty ribbon, or thread some thin ribbon through the holes if you’re feeling extra genteel.
Photography copyright David Loftus.