Sugar crusted bunny biscuits :: made at home ::

Although I have no children nor no plans to have children in the near future, one day I would like to have children and one thing I’m really keen on is that their dad know a couple of great recipes.  My dad, although he knows a damn good cheese and is great at picking delicious olives and marinated peppers, is not good at cooking.  Perhaps it’s not even that he’s not good at it – he just doesn’t cook.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen him cook – who know’s how I was fed when I was younger if my mom was away for a night – maybe she never was.

Perhaps I live in an idealistic world, but I am keen that N knows some great dishes so that my kids might get excited when they know dad’s going to make his signature Chocolate & Cinnamon Popcorn, for example.  N is pretty good at cooking, and always getting better and a little more enthusiastic – although still happiest with a recipe to follow.  At the weekend a handful of friends had decided to pop round in the afternoon for a wintery walk and a cup of hot tea.  As I headed off to the farmer’s market to help out for the morning,  I left N with a recipe for biscuits and my new bunny-shaped cookie cutter, hoping that something vaguely resembling a biscuit would greet me on my return.  (I am always more confident in N that I might let on).

I returned home to a house smelling fantastically of cinnamon and a wooden bowl full of golden bunny biscuits, encrusted with glittering sugar.  I was mightly impressed.  There is something quite exciting about homemade biscuits when they are made by someone else.  Anyway – although incredibly sweet (N sprinkled over far more sugar than the recipe asked for!) they were incredibly cute and very tasty, so well worth sharing.  And althougha week or two late, I think they would make ideal biscuits for hanging on the Christmas tree as they are robust enough to be dunked in hot drinks. 

the last bunny

the last bunny

Sugar crusted biscuits

Makes about 15

85g unsalted butter, room temperature & diced
115g caster sugar
175g plain flour
pinch of salt
1 large egg
1 egg yolk, for brushing
1 tbsp caster sugar, for sprinkling
Flavours to add (choose one):
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground mixed spice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond essence
grated zest of 1 small orange
grated zest of 1/2 lemon

Place the butter and sugar in a food processor and mix until smooth.  Add the flour, salt, whole egg and your chosen flavouring – process until a smooth dough.  Add a little water if the mixture doesn’t bind.  Wrap in clingfilm and bung in the fridge for about half an hour.

Preheat your oven to 160° / gas mark 4.

Roll out your dough on a floured surface to about 5mm thick.  Using your pastry cutter of choice, cut out your biscuits and place on baking trays.

Beat up your egg yolk and brush over the surface of the biscuits and sprinkle with a little sugar.  (If you’re going to make them into Christmas tree decorations, remember to make a hole in them at this point for hanging).

Bake for 10-15 minutes until lightly golden.  Leave to cool.

This recipe is adapted from Jo Pratt’s In the Mood for Food.