I came across this recipe in the Woolworths’ Fresh magazine Christmas edition and had seen the stained-glass idea in past years. I decided to give it a whirl for something different, road-testing these for potential gifts. I’m glad I did a test run because I know I won’t be using the shortbread recipe again. The dough is far too fiddly to use for this recipe but I have re-made these with last week’s gingerbread recipe and with that dough, they are wonderfully festive and easy to make.
300g pkt boiled lollies
200g butter, at room temperature
1?3 cup (70g) caster sugar
1?3 cup (80ml) golden syrup
2 cups (300g) plain flour
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line 5 oven trays with baking paper. Separate lollies into colours. Place the different colours into separate plastic bags and cover with a tea towel. Use a rolling pin or meat mallet to pound until the lollies are finely crushed.
Use an electric mixer to beat the butter, sugar, vanilla bean paste and golden syrup together until pale and creamy.
Add the flour and stir with a round-bladed knife in a cutting motion until the dough comes together.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead until smooth. Divide into 2 portions and cover with plastic wrap. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest.
Roll 1 dough portion out on a floured surface to a 4mm-thick disc. Use an 8cm star-shaped biscuit cutter to cut stars from the dough. Place 6 biscuits on 1 lined tray. Use a 4cm star-shaped cutter to cut the centre from each biscuit.
Although the recipe states “Bake for 4-5 minutes and then spread the crushed lollies into the star-shaped hole in each biscuit” I just did it all in one step and they baked fine, both with this shortbread and gingerbread. I baked them for about 10-12 minutes total, swapping the trays over halfway. When they’re done, set aside on tray to cool. Repeat with remaining dough portions and lollies.
Quick tip: be as neat as possible with the lollies otherwise they will make a mess on the biscuit – as you can see from my first tray above.
The stained-glass effect works brilliantly. especially with this, or any other reliable dough and they would look great hanging on your tree or as gifts.