Vanilla Cut Out Biscuits

I love a good cut out biscuit, who doesn’t like rolling and cutting dough into fun shapes?  I found myself at a bit of a lose end last night so I decided to have a go at this recipe I’d seen.  It seemed fairly simple and I managed to throw it together pretty quickly.  I made the dough before dinner then chilled it while we ate then rolled and cooked after we were done. 

The dough did get a lot more difficult to work with as it warmed up though. It was very soft and squishy after a rather short space of time so you need to work quickly and know when to stop and re-chill it.  Other than that there were no problems with it for me.  It makes a delicious shortbread-like biscuit and holds its shape very well with a minumum amount of spreading so long as you don’t roll the dough too thick.  The thicker the dough, the greater the spread so try to keep it nearer the 3mm mark than 5mm. 

Makes… well the recipe says 30, which sounds like it could be in the ballpark, we started eating them too quickly for me to count!  They’re very moreish!

225g butter, softened*
140g golden caster sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
280g plain flour
small pinch of salt

– Cream together the butter and the sugar until fluffy. 
– Add the egg yolk and the vanilla and beat in until well combined. 
– Sift in the flour and salt and mix until it forms a dough, bring it together with your hands. 
– Split the dough in half and flatten into discs. 
– Wrap in sandwich bags or cling film and place in the fridge for at least 30mins. 
– Heat the oven to gas mark 5 and line 2 baking trays. 
– Take one disc at a time out of the fridge and roll out between 2 sheets of baking paper to a thickness of 3mm.**
– Cut out your shapes and transfer to the lined baking sheets. 
– Bake for 10 minutes until just turning golden brown around the edges. 
– Cool on the tray for 5 mins then transfer to a wire rack. 
– Repeat in batches until all your douigh is used up, re-rolling and re-chilling as necessary.

* I give it 20 seconds in the microwave for butter straight from the fridge. 
** We save the plastic sheets that ready rolled icing and marzipan comes in for doing things like this.

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