Almond shortbread wreaths with brandy glaze

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 24 people

You might need a little elbow grease to pipe these beauties, but the result is a gorgeously short, delicate biscuit which just screams Christmas.

  • 280 gm softened butter
  • 80 gm raw caster sugar
  • Finely grated rind of 1 lemon and 1 orange
  • 300 gm (2 cups) plain flour
  • 80 gm almond meal
  • 30 ml orange juice
  • ½ tsp each finely grated nutmeg and ground cinnamon
  • To decorate: silver dragées and red holly sugar beads (optional; see note)
  •  
  • Brandy glaze
  • 340 gm pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) orange juice
  • 45 ml brandy
01   Preheat oven to 180C. Beat butter, caster sugar and grated rinds in an electric mixer until light and fluffy (5-6 minutes). Add flour, almond meal, orange juice and spices and beat to just combine. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 2cm fluted nozzle. Pipe 7cm-diameter wreaths onto baking trays lined with baking paper, leaving 2-3cm in between each to spread, then bake until light golden (12-15 minutes). Cool completely on trays, then transfer to a wire rack placed over a tray.
02   Meanwhile, for brandy glaze, combine ingredients in a bowl and mix until smooth and of drizzling consistency (add a little water to thin if necessary). Drizzle a little over each wreath, allowing excess to run off, decorate with silver dragées and red holly sugar beads, stand until set (15-20 minutes). Almond shortbread wreaths will keep stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Note Silver dragées and red holly sugar beads are available from specialist cake decorating suppliers.

Recipe:

EMMA KNOWLES

Photography:

WILLIAM MEPPEM

Styling:

EMMA KNOWLES

FEATURED IN

Dec 2009

Dec 2009

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