I’ve come to realise that the almond is my favourite nut. Whether ground to add moisture, chopped to add crunch or flaked to add decoration, it always shines for me. Despite its ubiquity I never tire of its flavour and it pairs so well with many other ingredients. Here I’ve used almond extract in some shortbread which I’ve been rationing so they last all week!
Chocolate & Almond Shortbread
Makes 8 slices
- 140g unsalted butter, slightly softened
- 70g dark brown soft sugar
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 180g plain flour
- 20g cocoa powder
- caster sugar, to sprinkle
Preheat the oven to 160°C (150°C fan)/325°F/gas mark 2. In a large bowl cream butter, sugar and almond extract together until light and fluffy. Sift in flour and cocoa, and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon until all the flour is incorporated and the mixture starts to come together.
Tip the mixture into a 20cm round tin and press flat, making sure it is evenly spread. Crimp the edge by pressing the tip of a finger around the edge of the shortbread at regular intervals, and prick all over with a fork before baking for 45-50 minutes (the surface will look dry when it’s ready).
Sprinkle with caster sugar and cut into eight wedges while still hot then leave to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.