The rich, citrus smell from the oven, the snap of warm shortbread in my hands, a sugar-sweet flavour in my mouth…these chocolate and orange shortbreads have become a firm favourite in my home. They work so well because it’s such a classic flavour combination: like strawberries and cream, chocolate and orange just goes together. That combination of tart with the luxurious is such a winner and works so well in these shortbreads.
This recipe is a Jamie Oliver one and I first saw it on TV one weekend. He said it was ‘fool-proof baking’ especially since it has been taken from his 5 Ingredients Quick & Easy recipe book. As much as I am staring to love cooking, baking is a whole other ball game. But only 5 ingredients? Quick and easy? Maybe, just maybe some baking does have my name on it.
As you can see from the recipe below you are supposed to go all Jackson Pollock on these shortbreads with some of the chocolate before you serve. And indeed on the TV show Jamie really did embrace his inner American abstract expressionist artist. This was the one thing I couldn’t do because as beautiful as it looked, it was just so wasteful. So much of the chocolate ended up not on the shortbread.
Of course it looks so much beautiful when Jackson Pollock-ed but I promise you the flavour isn’t at all lacking if you, like me, decide not to. I truly don’t think they need it.
150g – unsalted butter (at room temperature)
200g – plain flour
50g – golden caster sugar, plus extra to sprinkle
1 – orange
50g – dark chocolate (70g)
Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/gas 5. Grease a 20cm square baking tin and line with greaseproof paper. In a bowl, mix together the butter, flour, sugar and the finely grated zest of half the orange by rubbing the mixture between your thumbs and fingertips. Squash and pat into dough – don’t knead it – then push into the lined tin in a 1cm-thick layer. Prick all over with a fork, then bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly golden. Remove, sprinkle over a little extra sugar while it’s still warm, then leave to cool.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, then remove. Cut the shortbread into 12 finger portions, then transfer to a wire cooling rack. Drizzle with the chocolate, then finely grate over the remaining orange zest. Cut up the orange, and serve on the side!