Vanilla Shortbread Biscuits

These vanilla biscuits are perfect for decorating for any occasion! I used this recipe to make Mother’s Day biccies and actually liked how they turned out, despite it being so simple and easy to make! You could add loads of other flavours to the recipe too and get really creative with the shape and icing. This makes between 12 and 15 biscuits and I’ve added some variations you could try at the bottom of this post. Let me know if you try them and how they work out! I’d love to see some pics of your creations. Hope you enjoy!

P.S. If you can’t find vanilla bean paste, vanilla extract works just as nicely.

Ingredients for the biscuits:

  • 350g plain flour
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 125g granulated sugar
  • 125g salted butter softened, diced
  • 125g golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten

How to make the biscuits:

  1. Sift the flours together into a big bowl and add the sugar. Then mix it all up!
  2. Add the butter then (here comes the fun bit) using just the tips of your fingers, rub the ingredients together until the mix resembles breadcrumbs.
  3. When all the butter is evenly mixed, make a well in the middle and add the syrup, vanilla and the egg.
  4. Mix it well, making sure all the flour is off the side of the bowl and then stop as soon as you can make a ball out of the dough.
  5. Roll the dough out to however thick you want your biccies to be and cut them into funky shapes.
  6. Bake in the oven for 15-25 minutes depending on how big you’ve made your biscuits at 170 degrees C, or until they’re golden brown.

Ingredients for the icing:

  • 1 egg whites
  • 250g icing sugar

How to make the icing:

  1. Whisk the egg whites into the icing sugar on a slow speed for 5 minutes then a high speed for another 5 minutes.
  2. Split the icing into smaller batches or into as many colours as you want to use. Mix gel food colouring into each bowl of icing until you achieve the colour you’re going for.
  3. Pop a little bit of each colour into a piping bag for writing / outline icing. Then, if you want to completely cover your biscuits in icing add a bit of water to the remaining icing and mix to make your flood icing. Pop each flood icing into a piping bag and you’re ready to go!

Variations of the biscuits:

If you’re making a biscuit / shortbread like these which are rolled out and iced, I probably wouldn’t add chunks like chocolate or hazelnut just because that could make the whole process quite tricky. Instead, you could cut or crunch up your ingredients into really tiny bits beforehand. You could add dry extras into the flour and sugar and wet extras into the egg.

Nutmeg: add 1/4 tablespoon of grated nutmeg.

Ginger: add 1/2 tablespoon of ground ginger and some finely crystallised ginger.

Lemon: add the grated zest of 1 lemon.

Orange: add the grated zest of 1 orange and little orange-flavoured chocolate chips.

Cinnamon and orange: add the grated zest of 1 oranges and 1/4 tablespoon of cinnamon.

Coffee: add 1.5 tablespoons of instant coffee dissolved in 1/2 tablespoon of water.

Cardamon: crush 4 dried cardamon pods and add the little seeds from inside the husks.

Happy Biscuit Baking!

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