This is the taste of my childhood. Growing up in Spain, medias noches (half moons) were always present at birthday parties, filled with ham and cheese, chorizo, whatever savouries you can think of. It’s a slightly sweet bread (a bit along the lines of brioche). On the other hand, the bollos suizos (bollos de leche as they are known where I grew up) have a sugary topping and are a classic of Spanish confiterías and they were my favourites as a child (even over croissants). My parents still bring me a couple to the airport when they pick me up when I go visit in Spain (of course I am now 41 and it’s the little Tapita who ends up eating them)….
Back in December 2014 I had the chance to organise and attend a cooking Christmas party at the fantastic Cambridge Cookery School, the chosen theme was Middle Eastern and Sook food. Ever since then I’ve been wanting to adapt these Za’atar Flat Breads to the Thermomix as it is quite a wet dough and, let’s just face it, the Thermomix makes light work of kneading….
There has been a lot of talk about Thermomix Japanese Cotton Cheesecake in my Thermomix Owners UK Facebook group ever since Patricia posted a photo of hers (which she got from the Webos Fritos blog).
I absolutely adore this cake, it is not a cheesecake per se, the cotton part refers to its amazing soft touch and texture. It is very hit and miss with people though, the little Tapita (now 4 and a half, yikes!) and my husband didn’t like it but a couple of the school run mums loved it.…
I come from a lovely part of Spain called Galicia, full of sandy beaches and good food. Bica (pronounced bee-ka) is typical of this area and delicious dipped in coffee, which is why many coffee shops will bring you a bite (free!) if you order a coffee in the afternoon.
Yes, you read right, free!
Call it sweet tapas….
*En español más abajo
I am really bad at baking. No, seriously, just look at my Marble Cake recipe and you will laugh at how I cope so that I can bake. Needless to say I had never ever made biscuits in my life (ok, perhaps when I was a child but I don’t remember it). I adore shortbread so it was the ideal place to start.
A few weeks ago LittleT got up way too early (why do children always do that at the weekend?) and I needed some way of keeping her entertained. I looked and looked for recipes, then I messed this one up by missing the whole first milling of the sugar part and letting LittleT play with the dough and make shapes despite the advice not to do so for fear of them being overhandled, they still turned out great. For some reason the oven temperature provided just doesn’t work for these biscuits in our oven though.
We have made them a couple more times since then, even enrolling Mr Tapas’ help with the shaping of the biscuits at one point. I think I have them pinned down now and they are a new favourite for all of us.
Shortbread biscuits (makes approx. 30 biscuits)
Source | Preparation time: 10 minutes | Oven time: 15-20 minutes | Total time: 25-30 minutes
- 100 g caster sugar
- 50 g corn flour
- 260 g plain flour
- 225 g unsalted butter (cubed, straight from the fridge)
Thermomix TM31, 2 oven trays, parchment paper or silicon mats, cookie cutters, imagination.
- Preheat oven to 180ºC (fan). I guess this will be gas mark 4, 200º for non fan ovens and 350ºF.
- Place the sugar in the Thermomix bowl: 10 seconds, speed 9.
- Add the corn flour, plain flour and butter: 15 seconds, speed 6.
- Knead: 45 seconds, locked lid, kneading speed (apparently it’s officially called interval speed, you know the one with the button with the wheat picture…).
- Turn out the dough onto a clean surface, it’s easier if you unlock the blade as you do this so that it all falls together and then you can easily remove the blade.
- Give the biscuits shape (see below*) and place them in 2 baking trays lined with parchment paper or a silicon mat for 15-20 minutes. This means that I check them at 15 but they still seem to need 20 minutes. You will know when they are ready because they acquire a light golden colour.
* You have full creative freedom for the biscuit shapes, we use some Ikea star and heart-shaped cookie cutters from a kiddy baking set. We also use the Thermomix measuring cup to make really nice round biscuits.
Each person in my family seems to have a method for this, including LittleT, but basically just pinch out a bit of the dough, flatten it with your hand (LittleT has been known to use her wooden rolling pin and even that hasn’t done them any harm) and cut a shape with a cookie cutter, the Thermomix measuring cup or you could even use a knife.
The original recipe uses a very cool method so make sure you try it out, I tried it the first time we made these biscuits, it didn’t work for us. I told you I was useless at baking plus I do have a two year old helper.
Os la cuento en español muy rapidito porque os aseguro que estas galletas o pastas de mantequilla merecen la pena:
Ingredientes (salen unas 30)
100 g azúcar
50 g maicena
260 g harina
225 g mantequilla sin sal, recién salida de la nevera y cortada en daditos
- Precalentar el horno: 180ºC.
- Poner el azúcar en el vaso de la Thermomix: 10 segundos, velocidad 9.
- Añadir la maicena, la harina y la mantequilla: 15 segundos, velocidad 6.
- Amasar: 45 segundos, vaso cerrado, velocidad espiga.
- Poner la masa sobre una superficie limpia y dar forma a las galletas (como os dé la gana, de verdad, la receta puede con todo).
- Al horno 15-20 minutos, las mías suelen necesitar 20.