pseudorandom number generators...) and then counted along my shelf to pick my book, and then opened it randomly on a page.
The book I got was Rosie's Pantry Baking: Perfect Cakes & Bakes. This was a gift I received for Christmas and I believe it was from Boots, and doesn't seem to be widely available on the internet. I don't own very many baking books - in fact, I think I own two - because I don't do a lot of baking. So, it is probably a good thing that this challenge has forced me to do a little more.
I was quite relieved, however, that the page I opened the book on was for Shortbread (and I didn't cheat I promise!). I had never made shortbread before, but the recipe is pretty simple and suitable for baking novices like me.
I was interested to read in the book that shortbread dates back to at least the 16th century; although according to this blog it goes back to at least the 12th century, where it stated life as 'biscuit bread'.
Here is my cooked shortbread just out of the oven:
Yeah, I went a bit crazy with the sugar on top. You guys know by now that I don't do presentation, right? Also, what you can't see is that when I pressed the dough into the tin, I didn't quite have enough to fill the tin properly, so there is a gap in the shortbread just out of shot! I suspect my tin was too big for the amount I made. Oh, well!
Also, I scored the triangles out before cooking, but clearly I didn't do them deep enough because I couldn't even really see them once it had been cooked.
The good news is that it tastes very nice and the texture is really crumbly which means I didn't overwork the dough. I did however overbake it a little. Mary and Paul would not be impressed. But my husband is happy, so who cares? :)
|Slightly more appetising picture of shortbread...|
So, a good learning experience all round. Maybe one day I'll get the hang of presentation...