Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Cheese and walnut shortbread

Good morning! How are you? Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and that Santa was kind to you.

It is officially Tuesday with Dorie today, but as it is a rewind (ie make what you want from recipes that have already been chosen), and I am on holidays, I am posting something totally different instead.

The last new recipe for this year from my Christmas boxes is for Cheese and Walnut Shortbreads, from p254 of Margaret Fulton's Christmas. These little biscuits are spiced with paprika and packed with cheddar and Parmesan, so they are a great snack at any time, not just for Christmas. They'd also make great nibblies at your New Year's Eve party.

To make these shortbreads, you will need:

185g cold butter, chopped into 1cm cubes
1 1/2cups finely grated Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts

Put the flour, paprika and salt into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a couple of times to mix. Add the butter and cheeses to the bowl of the processor, and blitz for 20 seconds or until the dough clings together and forms a ball. (I needed to add more flour to achieve this.) Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured bench and knead it until it just comes together.

Divide the dough into two, press each piece into a flat disc with your hands, and wrap in cling film. Refrigerate the dough for an hour before use.

When you are ready to bake, preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and line 2 baking trays with baking paper or silicone mats.

Roll the dough out to 2-3mm thick and cut into stars with a star shaped biscuit cutter. Place the stars onto the lined baking trays, ~2cm apart. Continue until all the dough has been used.

Bake each tray of biscuits for 12-15 minutes or until golden in colour. Cool the biscuits completely on their trays before storing in an air-tight container.

These biscuits were just one feature of my Christmas boxes. Here is a plate arranged with the contents of a box: from top left, there is fruit cake, cucidata, rocky road, shortbread stars, plum pudding, rum ball, fruit mince tart and apricot ball. (I have posted the recipes for the other items in previous years - select the Christmas label on my side bar if you are interested.) I also added some of Dorie's cocktail nuts and some salted caramels:

I bought pretty Christmas themed boxes, and wrapped all the food in cellophane before placing in the box:

and tying the box shut with ribbon and adding a gift tag:

I think that I would be pretty happy if someone gave me this for Christmas. It looks delicious to me!

Hope that you are enjoying a break over Christmas with your loved ones.


Ivy said...

Still Monday over here Gaye!! Your friends are really lucky to get your gifts. Love those savory shortbread cookies.

Kayte said...

I will sit by my door waiting for my box to arrive...lol. It looks fantastic. I am getting a box, right? No??????? Shucks, because it looks really great and I agree, who would not want this? Stealing the recipe for the cute little stars. Thanks!

Johanna GGG said...

I would be quite happy with one of your gift boxes too - those shortbread stars look like a good addition - we have had too much sweet food lately so some cheesy bikkies would help balance the box

Gloria Baker said...

Dear Cake Law hope you had a lovely Christmas and Santa was kind with you!
Love your box and shortbreads stars are lovely all look yummy! gloria

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Merry Christmas Cakelaw! I love savoury shortbreads although they are very moreish and I can easily finish off a whole plate! :P

Anonymous said...

These look delicious! I'm having a quiet evening in with a few friends for New Year's so this will make a great nosh! Thanks for the recipe!

The Caked Crusader said...

Merry christmas - i love savoury biccies like these; I could eat loads with a nice drink

Sarah @ For the Love of Food said...

Ooh I love the sound of this shortbread and I think I'll make these for my NYE party as suggested! Thanks for the idea.

Jennifer said...

What a lovely Christmas box!

And cheese and walnut shortbread sounds delicious!!!!

TeaLady said...

Will have to try these shortbreads. Love cheesy crackers and the walnuts would really be good. Thanks for this one.

Anonymous said...

I'd love to make savory shortbread. Yours look wonderful!

Thanks for showing a photo of your Christmas box. I'm always looking for ideas to package food gifts. I used cellophane bags and put them into a gift bag this year, but I really like the idea of a box.

I hope you're having a great holiday. Happy new year!

Anh said...

oh yum! I never try savoury shortbread before!

Ruth Ellis said...

I'm writing a Daring Kitchen Food Talk article that should be published on the site next week.
It's a homemade edible gifts round up, and I'd love to include your cheese and walnut shortbread with a photo and a link.
Can you confirm if this is OK?
Kind regards

Ruth Ellis said...

The DK Article is now up