Friday, 1 January 2016


It’s hard to believe an entire year has come and gone. The older I get, the faster the they go. 2015 was hectic and eventful but with the recent installation of a new domestic helper, today I’m finally able to slow down and savour a quiet afternoon. 

A trusted recipe from my repertoire - rich buttery shortbread cookies with tangy cranberries and a kiss of orange. Happy New Year! May you always find the time for slow living.


Makes 40 cookies 

250 grams all-purpose flour 
40 grams rice flour 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
225 grams good quality unsalted butter, room temperature 
60 grams icing sugar 
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
2 tablespoons diced candied orange peel 
100 grams coarsely chopped dried cranberries 

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, rice flour and salt. 

In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter until smooth (about 1 minute). Add the sugar and beat until smooth and creamy (about 2 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract and zest. Gently stir in the flour mixture just until incorporated. Fold in the dried cranberries and candied orange peel, making sure they are evenly distributed throughout the dough. 

Form the dough into a log, about 5-cm in diameter.  Wrap with plastic and refrigerate overnight. 

When you're ready to bake, preheat your oven at 180 degrees C. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Unwrap the dough log and, using a very sharp knife, cut the chilled dough into slices no thicker than ½ cm. Place the slices on prepared baking sheets, spacing them well apart. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies are lightly brown. 

When the cookies are baked, rest them for a few minutes to firm up a bit, then transfer to wire racks. Allow the cookies to cool completely before storing in an airtight container. 


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