Saturday, 23 April 2011

Happy Easter!

  Just one more sleep and many of us will be too full of chocolate to move. Although, sadly, not in my house. We have all reached that miserable age where, along with being struck off the visiting list of the tooth fairy, we are all deemed too old for a gift from the Easter Bunny.  So, taking into account the lack of chocolate that will be brightening up my Sunday morning, and my Granny’s rather depressing comparison of her Simnel cake to a brick, I think it is about time I stop sunbathing in the garden and get busy in the kitchen.

Having already taken the rather predictable step of making chocolate nests (see below...) I feel in need of a new recipe that tastes wonderful and allows me to fulfil my springtime desire for pastel icing and mini-eggs.  Simnel cake, decorated with exactly 11 marzipan balls representing each of the disciples and bursting full of raisins and zesty lemon, is a very traditional Easter treat that unfortunately involves spending a lot more time in the kitchen than such a sunny day deserves.

These little biscuits on the other hand, are extremely quick and easy and a lot lighter than the rich Simnel cake, perfect for the hottest Easter weekend in history. Decorate them any way you fancy, although I think they look just perfect drizzled with pale pink and yellow icing and topped with chocolate eggs, as long as the Easter Bunny has not stripped the shops of all available chocolate already...

Simnel Biscuits (makes about 15)

175g butter
115g caster sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 egg yolks
225g plain flour
50g currants
400g marzipan
200g icing sugar
Food colouring
Mini eggs

Preheat the oven to 180oc

Cream the butter, sugar and lemon zest together until light and fluffy

Beat in the egg yolks and then the flour and currants

Mix until fully incorporated and firm. If it is a bit soft, add a sprinkling more flour and put into the fridge for at least an hour

Roll out on a sheet of greaseproof paper (or they will stick..) to about 5mm and cut into medium sized rounds. Transfer to a greased baking tray

Roll out the marzipan to the same thickness and cut into rounds of about half the size of the biscuit. Place on top of the dough and press down the edges to stick

Bake for about 12 minutes or until just golden, remove from the oven and transfer to cool on baking sheets

Put the icing sugar into a bowl and add a small amount of water to make a reasonably stiff paste.

Divide between 3 bowls and add a tiny dot of food colouring to each one.

Drizzle over the biscuits (when cool) and stick on the eggs, EAT!

1 comment:

  1. Happy Easter Charlotte, the biscuits look really good.Love Carol