Stained Glass Wonders

I can’t think of a better recipe to represent food creativity in such a simple way. This is definitely a creation that kids can get involved in. I came across these biscuits whilst searching for something interesting and unusual to make. I knew as soon as I saw them that I had to give them a try. This is a variation from the magazine ‘Baked and Delicious’.

There wasn’t an occasion to make these so my work colleagues got lucky! And I can safely say that they went down a treat. The looks of amazement were great. Everybody now thinks that I am really clever and talented. Winner! *Wink* They were very easy to make! Just remember to warn people that the centre of the biscuit is hard before they bite in to it. You don’t want to be responsible for a trip to the dentist!

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As long as you have 2 similar cookie cutters of 2 different sizes, you can be as creative you want with the shapes produced. Or if consistency is your style, they they can all be the same. 

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A couple of weeks ago, I made these for the first time for a birthday party. They all came out perfectly. Within 5 minutes, I had an empty plate in my hand! This time round, I encountered some problems at the baking stage. I decided to try out some new ideas. Wine gums instead of boiled sweets being one of them. Not quite the result I had in mind. It didn’t melt very well…

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Next time, I am going to try again, but put the wine gum in the centre right at the beginning of the baking instead of after the biscuit has started to bake. The reason the wine gum didn’t melt could have been due to not having long enough in the oven. Only trial and error will help! Using a jelly baby was another thought as they are softer and may melt more evenly. I’ll keep you updated on that one. If anybody gives it a go, do let me know how it turned out.

Another issue I came across is the size of the biscuits I cut out. I started off making quite large biscuits. One boiled sweet isn’t enough for these because it doesn’t melt all the way to the edges of the mixture. I suggest using 1-2 sweets in each hole. Or… make the biscuits smaller, which is what I opted for.

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DO NOT POKE THE MELTED SWEET STRAIGHT AFTER TAKING IT OUT OF THE OVEN. IT’S LIKE MOLTON LAVA! I’m speaking from experience. It hurts! 😀 Wait until they are cooler before admiring your biscuity delights. And so save some for others to try. As hard as it is to resits. They will thank you for it and so will the scales!

 

Love and Sweets xxx

 

Recipe: Stained Glass Cookies

Makes about 20-30.
Preparation Time: 30 minutes. 
Cooking Time: 12 minutes.

Ingredients:

– 200g (7oz) plain flour
– 25g (1oz) cornflour
– 100g (3 1/2 oz) butter
– 1/2 lemon
– 50g (2oz) icing sugar
– Hard boiled sweets in assorted colours

1) Sift the flour and cornflour together in to a large bowl. Cut the butter in to cubes and rub in to the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

2) Finely grate the zest from half a lemon and squeeze the juice. Stir the icing sugar, lemon zest and 2tbsp of the lemon juice in to the flour with a blunt knife.

3) Finish bringing the mixture together with your hands to form a soft dough. The mixture may seem dry to begin with, but the warmth from your hands will soften the butter and help to bind the dough together. It should be soft enough to have a smooth crack-free surface but firm enough to roll and cut out. If the dough is too firm add a little extra lemon juice and if it is too soft, chill for 15 minutes.

4) Preheat the oven to 180°c/350°f/Gas 4. Line the baking sheets with baking parchment. Roll the dough out to a thickness of 5mm (1/4in) on a lightly floured work surface.

5) Cut out the stars using any of the 3 largest cookie cutters. Place the stars onto the lined baking sheet. Use a palette knife to help move the cookies without distorting the shape.

6) Using the smaller cutters, cut out the centres from the stars and add to the pastry trimmings for re-rolling or bake as plain cookies.

7) Bake the cookies for 4 minutes. Remove them from the oven and place a sweet in the centre of each cookie. You may need to put 2 sweets in the cookies with the largest holes.

8) Return to the oven and bake for a further 6-7 minutes until the cookies are a very pale golden colour and the sweets have melted to fill the holes. Take care not to overcook them or the points will burn. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow them to cool completely on the baking sheet before peeling them away from the paper.

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