readingSpring Bonnets

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Spring Bonnets
Recipe - 29 March 2019

Introduction

These are so pretty and delicious too. Packed into a little box, they make a perfect gift for a mother, or even an Easter gift.

Preparation

1 hour

Cook Time

15-18 minutes

Serves

Makes 20

Difficulty

Moderate

Ingredients

  • 250g unsalted butter, softened
  • 100g golden caster sugar
  • 250g plain flour, sifted, plus more to dust
  • Pinch of salt
  • 125g ground almonds
  • Finely grated zest of 2 large unwaxed lemons
  • FOR THE ICING
  • 500g icing sugar or fondant icing sugar, sifted , plus more if needed
  • 5-6 tbsp lemon juice
  • Pot of yellow food colour paste
  • TO DECORATE
  • Tiny sugar flowers
  • 20 x 15cm lengths of 4mm - wide ribbon
  • TOOLS
  • Large fluted (8cm) and small (4cm) round cutters

Method

1. Line two baking trays with baking parchment.

2. Put the butter and sugar in a food mixer (or use a large bowl and a hand-held electric whisk). Cream until fluffy, then add the flour, salt, ground almonds and zest. Wrap in cling film and chill for 30 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/350°F/gas mark 4.

4. on a lightly floured work top, roll out the dough to 4mm thick. Cut out circles: i used 8cm wide fluted cutter and a smaller 4cm circle cutter. Place the larger on one tray, the smaller on another, re-rolling until the dough is used. You should have 20 of each size. At this point, you can freeze the cut-out biscuits.

5. Bake in the preheated: the smaller biscuits take 9-10 minutes and the larger 15-18 minutes. Cool for a few minutes on the trays, then remove to wire racks to cool completely. You can bake the biscuits a day or two ahead and store in an airtight container.

6. To make the icing, put the icing sugar in a bowl. Slowly still in the lemon juice until you have a fairly stiff paste that will spread over the bonnets without pouring over the edges into a mess (using fondant icing sugar will prevent this). If needed, the icing can be thickened with more icing sugar or thinned out with water.

7. Divide between two bowls and stir enough yellow food colour into one to make pale yellow icing, leaving the other white. cover each with cling film.

8. Take five larger biscuits, and place on a work top. Spread a small amount of white icing into the centre and top with a small biscuits (this is the crown of the bonnet).

9. Spoon over some white icing and gently spread to the edge using a small blunt knife. Decorate straight away with sugar flowers and ribbon, sticking them to the still tacky icing. Repeat. Do the same with the second half of the biscuits and the yellow icing, until all the bonnets have been decorated and half are white and half are yellow. Leave to set.

Spring bonnets
MG 8092

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