I have always loved baking bread, cakes and puddings at home. Now that I work for our family run flour mill I'm experimenting in the kitchen more than ever. Rich chocolate hazelnut shortbread is the perfect sweet treat for this time of year. Its really more-ish and will have the whole family coming back for more, but is easy to make in a food processor. These shortbread pieces are delicious at tea or coffee time.
Makes 12 pieces
● 260g plain flour
● 100g unrefined caster sugar
● 40g cocoa powder
● A pinch of sea salt
● 200g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
● 40g hazelnuts, toasted and halved
● 20.5cm sandwich tin, well greased
● Heat the oven to 180°C, 350°F, Gas 4.
● Put the flour, sugar, cocoa and salt into the bowl of a food processor, and process for a few seconds just to combine the ingredients.
● Add the diced butter and process again. After about 30 seconds, the mixture will look like fine crumbs; after another 30 seconds or so it will start to come together to make a firm dough.
● Turn off the machine, remove the blade and tip the dough onto a work surface.
● Add the nuts and quickly work into the dough. Transfer the dough to the prepared tin.
● Press the dough into an even layer using the back of spoon. Prick the dough well and score into 12 sections with a round-bladed knife.
● Bake in the heated oven for about 20 minutes until just firm. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with icing sugar, then cut into sections along with the marked lines. Leave to cool before removing from the tin.
● Store in an airtight container. Best eaten within a week.
● Cooking tip: As the mixture is rich in cocoa, watch it carefully as it bakes - you do not want it to scorch, but undercooked shortbread is not good either, so reduce the oven temperature if it begins to brown before the shortbread is cooked.