My recipe for this month’s blog is a perfect gift to celebrate, not only, Valentine’s Day but great to bake for Mum on Mother’s Day which follows soon after on 26th March. This giant jammy dodger is not only fun to bake but really delicious too. It is a much larger version of that well loved biscuit to be found in every supermarket in the land!
My biscuit in the photo is filled with strawberry jam but why not try a chocolate spread, lemon curd or any favourite jam. All would be equally delicious.
TIP – The uncooked dough freezes brilliantly and you can of course bake the unfilled biscuits up to a few days ahead and store in a sealed airtight container. Once filled they will begin to soften so fill on the day if you can.
Makes 3 x 15cm Biscuits
For the biscuits
- 250g plain flour, plus plenty to dust
- 120g cornflour
- 100g icing sugar, plus more to dust (optional)
- 250g unsalted butter, softened and diced
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 6 tbsp strawberry jam, lemon curd, caramel spread or a filling of your choice
- 5cm heart cutter
- paint brush
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/340°F/gas mark 3½.
- In a large bowl, sift the flour, cornflour and icing sugar together. Rub in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles crumbs. Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract. Gently bring into a ball, wrap in cling film and rest in the fridge for 30 minutes or so, as this buttery biscuit dough is very soft and needs to firm up.
- On a very well-floured board, with a floured rolling pin, roll out half the dough to 4mm thick. If the dough is too soft to work with easily, place the board of rolled-out dough into the fridge to firm up for 30 minutes or so. Cut out three circles at a time using a 15cm baking tin or a plate as a guide. Repeat with the remaining dough. Cut a heart shape from the centre of three of the biscuits.
- Place the biscuits on two or three baking sheets lined with baking parchment and, using the end of a paint brush, make a pattern all around the edges. Rest in the fridge or at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Bake for 12–15 minutes, re-cut the central hearts straight away if necessary, and cool on the baking tray; don’t try to move them until they’re cold!
- If the jam is not smooth, warm it slightly in a small pan, then press through a sieve to remove any lumps. Let it cool completely. Spread 2 tbsp jam on to each of the whole biscuits, and dust those with heart-shaped holes with icing sugar, if you like. Place the tops of the biscuits on the bases.
The Birthday Cake Book by Fiona Cairns (QuadrillePublishing) Photograph: Laura Edwards
In the bakery, we are already busy baking Valentines cakes. Look out for these cute fairy cakes in a Waitrose near you!