It would appear that posts on Sharky Oven Gloves are like buses: so sign of one for ages and then two come along nearly at once. In order to counteract yesterday’s slightly mammoth post, I’m going to keep this one on the shorter side. Nothing to do with the fact that I’m watching the Scotland vs Ireland Six Nations rugby game whilst I write, obviously, and that it’s 3:30am here – I apologise if this post doesn’t score very highly in the coherence stakes. It turns out that waking up at 3am was worth it in the end though, both for Scotland’s totally unexpected (albeit perhaps not terribly deserved, but I’m not complaining) win and for this morning’s beautiful sunrise, which has nothing to do with today’s post, but was too pretty not to share:
I might not have been very good at actually writing up posts and publishing them, but I have still been baking away and keeping an eye on the various challenges that I usually take part in. This month’s AlphaBakes is being hosted by Ros over at The More Than Occasional Baker, and the randomly chosen letter is “E.” Nothing immediately sprang to mind on reading the challenge (as a basic ingredient, eggs don’t count), so I made myself a cup of tea to think about it and it hit me (not literally): Earl Grey. I do love baking with tea – it’s such an easy way to add delicious flavours and there are so many different types to choose from that the possibilities are endless.
I find that Earl Grey is flavourful enough to work in dense cakes yet delicate enough for lighter cakes or biscuits. It’s been so warm and summery (I know, I know you all hate me, and it won’t help my case to mention that this recipe was baked in a bikini after a good long swim in the sea – have I mentioned that my life is a little ridiculous at the moment?) that I decided to go for the lighter biscuits option and settled on making Earl Grey and lemon melting moments which are basically Earl Grey and lemon shortbread biscuits sandwiched with lemon buttercream. The zingy lemon flavour is perfectly refreshing for summer, and the biscuits themselves really were just melt-in-the-mouth. Pure yumminess!
Earl Grey & lemon melting moments
Makes about 20 melting moments or 40 biscuits
Adapted from lemonpi
I used Twinings Earl Grey teabags, but you can obviously use whatever Earl Grey you have at home, though do be aware that they are all a little different, so you may need to adjust the amount of lemon slightly. If you’re a little pushed for time, the shortbread biscuits are also equally delicious on their own without being sandwiched with lemon buttercream. I piped the buttercream into my biscuits but I don’t think that really adds anything and just creates extra washing-up. The biscuits will keep for a few of days in an airtight container.
For the biscuits:
180g unsalted butter, softened
60g icing sugar
180g all-purpose flour
10 Earl Grey teabags (I used Twinings)
Zest of 1 lemon
Pinch of salt
For the buttercream:
60g icing sugar
30g unsalted butter, softened
1½ tsp lemon juice
To make the biscuits:
1. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and icing sugar with an electric whisk. Sift the flour, cornflour, contents of the Earl Grey teabags (just tip any bits that don’t go through the sieve into the bowl) and salt into the bowl along with the lemon zest, and mix together with your hands until it comes together (this may take a wee while, but perseverance is key). The dough may be a little crumbly but don’t worry. Wrap in cling-film and refrigerate for a good 20 mins or so.
2. Line a couple of baking trays with baking paper. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C.
3. When the dough has chilled, pinch off just less than a teaspoon of dough and roll into a ball. Space them out on the baking trays, leaving about 4cm space between them. Flatten each ball slightly with a fork. Bake for about 15-18 mins until firm but still pale. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the buttercream:
4. Once the biscuits have cooled completely, make the buttercream. Sift the icing sugar into a medium-sized bowl and add the cubed butter and lemon juice. Using an electric whisk, mix until smooth and of a stiff consistency.
5. Pair up the biscuits and add a little dollop of buttercream to one of each pair before gently sandwiching them together. They may need to sit a little while for the buttercream to set slightly.