Tis the season for shortbread! Dairy free isn't an issue - we can do wonderful vegan shortbread that melts in your mouth. These have been flavoured with orange and then dipped in chocolate. Perfect.
The starting point for this recipe was the old Betty Crocker Shortbread recipe from my Mum's cookbook. I've altered it a bit as I think it needs more dairy free margarine then the butter recipe calls for to get that melting texture when you bite into them.
I think orange and chocolate is one of those classic combinations that just works so well. You can see the zest in these shortbreads which is great; the dark chocolate compliments the buttery texture of the shortbread and the bite of the orange.
1 cup Pure Sunflower Margarine
1/4 caster sugar
2 cups plain flour
zest of one Orange
1 tsp of Orange essence
200g dark chocolate
Preheat the oven to 350°F, 170°C
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add in the orange zest and essence - mix to combine. Work in the flour with your finger tips or with a ballon whisk on a mixer. Chill for 30 minutes.
Roll dough to 1/2 inch thick and cut into small shapes (bells, stars, gingerbread men)
Place 1/2 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake for 20 minutes or until set - immediately remove from baking sheet and let cool on wire rack.
Grab a pot, add some water and bring up to simmering point. Put an heat proof bowl on top and melt the dark chocolate. Simply dip your shortbreads into the chocolate to either cover one side completely, or part of the shape - wings, heads etc. Whatever takes your fancy.
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