What is Shortbread Biscuit?
Shortbread biscuit has been a Scottish treat since the 1700s. It is a popular dunking biscuit. This simple and tasty treat is no longer limited to special occasions and can be purchased all year round. You can even make it at home.
Why is Shortbread Biscuit Special?
It is a buttery and sweet treat similar to a cookie. At the same time, it is not the same as other cookies and biscuits. Its uniqueness lies in its simple recipe, preparation process and baking method. Traditionally it has been made only with three ingredients – flour, sugar and butter. Its traditional recipe requires three parts white flour, one part sugar and two parts butter. Over the years, this recipe has undergone several adaptations to keep up with the changing tastes and demands. Now different varieties of this biscuit are made by adding a few other ingredients. Flavours, raisins, salted caramel are added to get different tastes and textures. Modern shortbread recipes do not include leavening agents like baking powder. Some bakeries add cornflour, icing sugar and salt to the traditional shortbread recipe.
Why Does it Have “Short” in its Name?
The term “short” in the 1700s was used for crisp and crumbly items. Later on, baked items like bread, biscuits and cakes rich in fat like butter and shortening were also covered in this category. Shortening is any fat that remains hard at room temperature but melts when heated during the baking process. This type of fat is used in dough and batter to initiate the shortening process. This ingredient to the recipe results in a baked product that has a crisp, crumbly and flaky texture.
How is it Different from Biscuits & Sugar Cookies?
The difference between a biscuit and shortbread is that a biscuit is a cookie, while a shortbread is one type of biscuit. Shortbread biscuits are different from sugar cookie with have more ingredients like eggs, leavening agents, salt and flavouring agents.
The shortbread dough is left to chill for a short time to make it easier to cut out the cookie shape pieces from the flattened dough. The dough should be handled only until it becomes pliable. Many companies now manufacture shortbread biscuits in a variety of flavours. These biscuits have a luxurious and homemade look. They taste great and are perfect for dunking in the tea.
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Mark Dubois grew up in a tiny village in the South of France where fresh ingredients, traditional recipes, and fantastic french wines are present in every house and corner. Chef Mark is specialised in Mediterranean Gastronomies, but he is more passionate about baking. Chef Mark is currently working as a hosted Chef in different restaurants around Europe.