Day ninety-seven

Scotland A few fun facts about
Scottish shortbread:

  • In Shetland a decorated
    shortbread was traditionally broken over a bride’s head before she
    entered her new home.
  • Shortbread was
    classified as a bread by bakers in Scotland to avoid paying the tax
    placed on biscuits.
  • The Scottish custom of
    eating shortbread on New Year’s Eve derives from an ancient pagan
    ritual of eating Yule Cakes.
  • January 6th of
    each year is National Shortbread Day.
  • Shortbread began as an expensive luxury reserved for
    special occasions.
  • Shortbread is traditionally
    formed into one of three shapes: one large circle divided into
    segments (“Petticoat Tails”); individual round biscuits
    (“Shortbread Rounds”); or a thick rectangular slab cut into
    “fingers.”
  • Shortbread began as a medieval
    “biscuit bread”, where leftover dough from bread making was dried
    out in a low oven until it hardened into a type of rusk (“biscuit”
    meaning “twice cooked”). Gradually the yeast in the bread was
    replaced by butter, and biscuit bread developed into
    shortbread.
  • Now it is very popular for both
    tourists in Scotland (particularly Walkers shortbread) and as an
    everyday treat around the world.
  • In 1921 the
    British government proclaimed that in order for it to be called
    shortbread a product must get at least 51% of its fat from real
    butter. (Cookies marketed as shortbread outside Britain, however,
    do not have such a requirement.)
  • (All information from Historic-uk.com, MadeHow.com, WalkersShortbread.com and EnglishTeaStore.com)
Shortbread is one of the easiest desserts to
make, consisting of flour, sugar and butter, and is delicious.
There are many recipes, but I used this very simple one from allrecipes.com
and they turned out fantastic and not too sweet!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups butter
  • 1 cup
    packed brown sugar
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose
    flour

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees
    C).
  2. Cream butter and brown sugar. Add 3 to 3
    3/4 cups flour. Mix well.
  3. Sprinkle board with
    the remaining flour. Knead for 5 minutes, adding enough flour to
    make a soft dough. Roll to 1/2 inch thickness. Cut into 3×1 inch
    strips. Prick with fork and place on ungreased baking
    sheets.
  4. Bake at 325 degrees F (165 degrees C)
    for 20 to 25 minutes.

A pile
of deformed (but very tasty) shortbread. I realized after making
the dough that I didn't have a rolling pin.


Today Hungarian Omelette
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2 thoughts on “Day ninety-seven

  1. Pingback: One hundred and twenty-three | threehundredsixtysixdays

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