Chocolate Orange Shortbread

DSC_0816As the arrival of the wonderful Coke advert with its iconic truck, sparkly lights and snow has so helpfully informed us:  holidays are coming!  


And rather quickly at that.  December always seems to be swallowed up so quickly in a whirl of entertaining, eating, drinking and general merrymaking, doesn’t it?


If you’re time starved yet still in need of a recipe for something delicious to give as a hostess gift or just to delight any holiday visitors you have popping over, then today’s recipe is for you.


You can whip up some of this orange scented, chocolate speckled, crumbly yet crunchy shortbread in no time at all.  You will need just one bowl and a baking tray to do so!  Hurrah to minimal effort and maximum deliciousness!


I’m not sure whether shortbread can be classified as a “festive” biscuit.  But when I think of shortbread, I think of a roaring log fire, a big pot of tea and snuggling up from the cold weather.


It’s definitely a winter time treat (she says, writing from Singapore where the temperature is about 32°c right now!!) so when you add some orange zest into the mix, I think this is definitely worthy of being a Christmas time treat.


Chocolate Orange Shortbread

Makes 25 small squares or 12 larger pieces

110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
55g caster sugar plus extra for sprinkling
Zest of 1 orange
110g plain flour
55g semolina
75g chocolate (milk or dark), chopped into small pieces

To make:
  1. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, stir together the butter, sugar, and orange zest using a wooden spoon until completely combined.  Add the flour, semolina and chocolate and mix until a smooth paste forms.
  3. Place on the baking sheet and form into either a square or round about 20cm by 20cm if you’re making a square, just under 1cm thick. Flatten out using your hand.  Divide your shape into sections (I made 25 small squares 4cm x 4cm) using a knife and prick all over using a fork, going right the way through the dough.
  4. Chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes until firm.  Preheat the oven to 170°c/340°f/150°c fan.
  5. Sprinkle lightly with caster sugar then bake in the oven for 40 minutes until lightly golden.
  6. Cool on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool fully.  Either eat immediately or store in an air tight container for up to a week.


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