A Seasonal Christmas – Blueberry Shortbread

21 Dec

Being half American, many of my traditional family Christmas recipes are cold weather foods. There are a few exceptions (like my Mum’s famous pasta salad), but I am just starting to harvest an increasing number of summer fruit and veggies with no way of using them in our Christmas festivities.

So today I thought I’d start adapting some traditional recipes to incorporate Australian seasonal ingredients.

My two blueberry bushes are in their first year. I know you aren’t supposed to let them fruit so early, but I did. We’ve been picking fruit here and there for several weeks, but they just keep coming. The recent cold snap has even fooled them into flowering again!

 

I thought I might pick the remaining ripe fruit and use them in some shortbread.

I used the normal recipe that I use each year, adapted it slightly for the ingredients I had on hand, and added some blueberries.

 

Blueberry Shortbread

  • 250g butter, softened
  • 1 handful of blueberries -large ones quartered, medium halved, small ones whole.
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup tapioca starch/flour (you can use cornflour)
  • 1 cup pure icing sugar

Preheat oven to 160 degrees

Beat butter until light and fluffy, then slowly add the sifted icing sugar until combined.

Slowly add the remaining dry ingredients

Turn out onto a bench and incorporate the blueberries, keading gently – just enough to bring the dough together.

Unbaked shortbread dough, pressed into pan

Line a slice tray with baking paper, place mixture in the tray until and spread out evenly.

Poke the mixture decoratively with a fork or toothpick and sprinkle some sugar over the top.

Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes until lightly browned.

The results were really good – the flavour is lovely and complements the shortbread well. I might be tempted to add a little lemon zest next time too.

I might try to continue this to use more freshly-grown produce unconventionally in my Christmas recipes. Anyone want to join me?

Blueberry shortbread

Advertisements

17 Responses to “A Seasonal Christmas – Blueberry Shortbread”

  1. Lani December 21, 2011 at 3:05 pm #

    Yum! I picked my blueberries in their first year too. Couldn’t resist. Happy Christmas.

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 21, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

      Thanks Lani. Glad to hear I’m not the only one. Happy Christmas to you too 🙂

  2. Sarah December 21, 2011 at 4:36 pm #

    My favourite is a tomato, basil and bocconcini salad. It’s a great salad for this time of year – it’s seasonal, tastes great and looks really festive. That is, if this rainy weather lets up so the tomatoes can grow and ripen!

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 21, 2011 at 5:10 pm #

      Arghh…*drool*. Might have to get me some bocconcini tonight – thanks for the reminder 🙂

  3. fourkingdoms December 21, 2011 at 10:14 pm #

    I made a really yumy seasonal salad last night – made from our cherry tomatoes, cucumber and mint. It may have been even better with bocconcini…

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 21, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

      A salad with your tomatoes would be super delicious, but you’re right – everything is better with bocconcini!

  4. Maggie Walters December 21, 2011 at 10:45 pm #

    that looks so good! can you use other berries in it’s place? we’ve got a plethera of strawberries right now …. merry christmas! and ENJOY all that you are doing as you move towards Creation Care! Ps 24:1!

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 21, 2011 at 11:34 pm #

      I really don’t know Maggie- my gut instinct says strawberries wouldn’t work (water content is too high), but I could be completely wrong! They might work beautifully for all I know! With all the rain we’ve had my strawberries have really suffered – the ones that I do get are irresistible to the slugs.

  5. Sarah December 21, 2011 at 11:38 pm #

    I’m not sure if I’ve ever baked shortbread, so I’ll have to give your recipe a try. I know that two variatons you might want to try are Lemon Myrtle and Wattleseed. Both are native herbs – lemon myrtle has a really sweet lemony taste, and wattleseed is more like a toasted coffee flavour.

    • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 21, 2011 at 11:40 pm #

      I tried those lemon Myrtle cookies at the good food show with you this year – they *were* amazing. I’m pretty sure I have never tasted wattleseed.

      • Sarah December 22, 2011 at 12:00 am #

        Wattleseed is pretty good. Herbies has lots of native seasonings, including some new ones I’ve not seen before like Aniseed Myrtle and Strawberry Gum.

        I think, though, that I might take your shortbread recipe and add some black sesame paste to it.

      • L from 500m2 in Sydney December 29, 2011 at 11:01 am #

        I was given (completely co-incidentally) a jar of wattleseed and another of aniseed myrtle for Christmas. Now what to do?

  6. Leanne Cole December 22, 2011 at 8:18 am #

    I nominated you for the Versatile Bloggers Award http://leannecole.wordpress.com/2011/12/22/nights-and-awards/, I hope this is OK

  7. Jo from the green backyard December 22, 2011 at 3:39 pm #

    That looks and sounds lovely. Blueberry bushes are on my wish list…

  8. Liz December 27, 2011 at 8:39 am #

    What a lovely idea! I will have to give this a try.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: