Lavender and Almond Shortbread

Nicolette van Niekerk
I never make shortbread with an electrical attachment or food processor. Always by hand. The fact that you mix the cold butter by hand, pressing the flour and sugar into it, ensures a better crumbly texture and thus more “short” on the mouth I feel. I will post a traditional version of the shortbread later, but with this recipe I made it in the mixer due to new ingredients that needs a bit more time mixing through. The difference with this shortbread recipe is the added rice flour. It ensure a sandier texture and goes well with Lavender. Add almond flakes for an extra crunch. The varieties of this shortbread additions are endless. Think dried rosemary or chocolate chip or what about pecans? I think I will try a lemon version next. Delicious! Lavender and almond shorbread cover Lavender and almond shorbread Preparation time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 10 -15 minutes
Servings: 15 fingers / 20cm baking pan (1cm deep)  

150g Cold salted butter, diced
80g Castor sugar
150g Cake flour
60g Rice flour
15ml Vanilla essence
2 Dried lavender flowers (Do buy them from a Health Store to ensure they are edible)
30g Flaked almonds
Castor sugar for dusting
Shortbread steps
  1. Preheat the oven to 150℃. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Rub the cold butter into the castor sugar, cake flour and rice flour.
Shortbread  3. Add the vanilla essence and work the dough into a soft ball. Pressing the flour gently into the  butter.
4. Add dried lavender and flaked almonds. Mix well. Shortbread dough 5. Press the dough into the baking tin. Optional to cut them into fingers. I baked mine in a circle tray and cut them to size afterwards.
6. Lightly prick holes in the pastry. You can use a fork but I used my meat tenderizer wheel to do the trick.
7. Bake for 10-15 minutes (if you have cut them into fingers) or 25 – 30 minutes if it’s once solid round.
8. Remove from the oven just before it’s done. Almost golden brown. Not when it’s done as the biscuits will bake additional time in the pan even when it’s removed.
9. Leave to cool and dust with castor sugar.
Lavender and almond shorbread raw copy