Halloween is not a big deal in this house. Call me a curmudgeon but I’m just not keen on this Americanized sugar-fest. Also, it’s too close to 5th November – a proper British holiday! – and I resent how it’s been edging it out. Forget the trick-or-treating, bring back penny-for-the-guy! And Halloween doesn’t even have fireworks.
BUT, of course things have to change when you have a small person around. They did Halloween at school, and Kipper is now very keen to celebrate this previously unknown festival. Gah. (I knew there was a reason we should homeschool…)
And so I found myself carving a pumpkin. A very small one, I admit, but a pumpkin nonetheless. Despite myself, I’m actually quite proud of the results. Kipper sketched out what she wanted, and I rendered it in pumpkin. It’s very happy looking.
I also used the opportunity to have a go with my new letterpress cookie set, which is absolute genius! It’s like one of those stamper sets you had as a kid, only it imprints your messages into biscuits! Hurrah! (I also discovered you can stamp your messages into toastable items like bread or scotch pancakes prior to toasting. What fun!) We used the heart and ‘biscuit’ shaped cutters from the set, and also put messages onto some pumpkin shaped biscuits that we made using a cutter from my enormous tub of cookie cutters.
I thought the messages would show up best on a biscuit that didn’t rise too much, so we had a go at honey shortbread. I was too scared to substitute honey for all the sugar, but used half and half, which gave a very pleasant honey flavour without impacting on the biscuits’ texture too much. A pinch of cinnamon added a light spicy edge without overpowering. Yum.
You can, of course, make these honey shortbread biscuits whenever you like, not just Halloween. Light, crisp and tasty, they would be delicious anytime. And if you have a letterpress cookie set, you can even stamp them with appropriate messages – Happy Thursday! Bon Voyage! Votes for Women!
(Speaking of voting, if you were to vote here, then I, and many others, would be exceedingly grateful. Thanks!)
- 100g butter
- 25g golden caster sugar
- 25g honey
- 100g plain flour
- 50g rice flour
- Generous pinch cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 170C. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a non-stick liner.
- Cream the butter with the sugar and honey until light and fluffy.
- Mix the flours and the cinnamon. Gently combine with the creamed butter mixture to form a soft dough. (It may be slightly sticky from the honey.)
- Roll out between two sheets of greaseproof paper to a thickness of 4-5mm. Cut out your desired shapes and carefully transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake at 170C for 10 minutes until just colouring. Allow to cool for a few minutes then transfer to wire racks until cold.
I’m entering my honey shortbread into this month’s Treat Petite, hosted by Cakeyboi and The Baking Explorer, and Let’s Cook for Halloween hosted by Simply Sensational Food. I’m also linking this recipe up with Casa Costello’s Bake of the Week, and entering it into the Halloween competition over on Cakeyboi’s blog, with prizes from Kleeneze. Wish me luck!