Showing posts from December, 2015

Family Shortbread Recipe

If I were to make just one cookie for Christmas? It's shortbread. In our family, Christmas isn't Christmas without shortbread, spare, simple, ethereal English shortbread. Here I've collected all the family tricks and tips all in one place. Merry Christmas, All. May your season be remembered for kindness and generosity and if you're lucky, a piece of shortbread or two at the end of the day ...
"Stop! You're overthinking it!" That's what the Family Shortbread Queen aka my sister blurted out when teaching me how to make shortbread a few years back. Adanna's shortbread is ethereal. Buttery and barely sweet. Ever so tender but with that perfect "snap" when you bite into it.Our family shortbread recipe comes from our grandmother, a Canadian married to an Englishman. Like all shortbread, it's spare and simple, just a few good ingredients.Since that first lesson, I've made many-a-batch of shortbread, collecting the details on what works …

Sugared Cranberries

Prepare to be stunned. Sugared Cranberries are a rush of sweet and sour, wet and dry. It's a big payoff from just two ingredients and a few minutes of time. So festive!
Can you imagine eating a raw cranberry? I sure couldn't. But once they're sugared? Wow. What a rush of sweet and sour, wet and dry. And Sugared Cranberries are so pretty! I made these to embellish a plain-jane English-style gingerbread cake that sadly turned out to be more "ginger cake" than "gingerbread" (which means I'm stilllllllll lookin' for "my" recipe, thank you very much) but time got away, that didn't happen.But I'm happy to have them on hand, a big payoff for little effort. They won't go to waste, this holiday season. SUGARED CRANBERRIESHands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 24 hours
Makes about 2-1/2 cups

SIMPLE SYRUP 1 cup water1 cup (200g) sugar
CRANBERRIES 2 cups fresh (not frozen) cranberries1/2 cup Simple SyrupAdditional sugar

Gingerbread Pudding Cake

Who else grew up with that old-fashioned brownie pudding cake, those magical layers of warm chocolate cake on top and warm chocolate pudding below? This is that cake except – be still, my beating heart – it's gingerbread.
Yes, you read it right. Gingerbread Pudding Cake. Warm gingerbread cake on top and warm gingerbread pudding underneath. It brings silence to tables. It causes grown men to groan. It makes up in minutes and while humble in appearance, is a stunning company dessert during the holidays.Or you know, for two, enjoyed in companionable silence before a blazing fire, watching the twinkle of lights on the Christmas tree ... or after a glass or two of something bubbly on New Years Eve. GINGERBREAD PUDDING CAKEHands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 70 minutes
Enough for an 11x7 baking dish, serving 8

DRY INGREDIENTS 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, fluffed to aerate before measuring or 192g1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda2 teaspoons ground ginger1 teaspoon cinnamon1/2 teaspoon al…