I am not going to mention the Q-word today.
Instead I'm going to indulge in a bit of grumpy-old-woman.
On Thursday I made a huge batch of gingernuts. Today there are three left and it was not I who ate them all. More biscuits were needed and I fancied some shortbread. I hadn't made shortbread in an age. I decided that instead of making a big slab of shortbread I'd make biscuits.
Now, here comes the grumpy-old-woman bit, my recipe was in metric. I don't have a problem with metric measurements as such, but when they make things more complicated I do. Shortbread is such an old, traditional recipe I feel it should not be metricated. T'aint natural.
The recipe I was using called for 85g sugar, 170g butter, 230g flour and 30g cornflour. I began to weigh the ingredients out. As I did so I looked at the imperial calibrations on my scale and remembered what I had forgotten: that the weights for shortbread ingredients were a simple formula.
1 part sugar : 2 parts butter : 3 parts flour
This was one of the first cookery lessons I remember learning. To make a round of shortbread you need 2oz sugar, 4oz butter and 6oz flour.
85g is 3oz, 170g is 6oz , 230g is 8oz and 30g is 1oz (give or take) -much simpler, much more logical.
Yes, I am an imperial girl and if you think Great Britain is fully metricated why is milk still sold in pints? True, the volume is given in litres on the cartons, but it isn't 1 litre or 2 litres is it? it's 1.13l or 2.27l which is of course 2 pints and 4 pints. The cream I buy comes in 284ml cartons, in other words half a pint. Golden syrup comes in 454g or 907g tins - 1lb and 2lb, and who buys 568 ml of beer in a pub?
Imperial Shortbread Biscuits
3oz caster sugar
6oz soft butter -don't even think about using margarine
8oz plain flour
Beat the soft butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Electric beaters make light of this.
Stir in the sifted flours working the mixture together to form a smooth dough.
Roll out about a quarter of an inch.
Cut with a 3inch biscuit cutter. You should get about 20.
Place on baking sheets that you have greased or lined with baking parchment. I like reusable baking liners.
Bake for 12-15 mins at 180c or 160c if you have a fan oven/350F/gas 4
They should be pale so don't overcook them.
Pounds and ounces forever!