Christmas reindeer biscuits: tasty vanilla shortbread very easy to decorate!
Ingredients (makes 30 – 40 biscuits depending on how big you cut them)
- 75 g/2.25 oz butter or margarine
- 75 g/2.25 oz caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp milk (use whichever milk you have in)
- 225 g/8 oz plain flour (and a couple of tablespoons extra to dust your board and rolling pin)
- 1-2 tsp of vanilla essence
I used my food mixer to do the following but you could use electric hand beaters or old-fashioned elbow grease.
Blend the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the milk, vanilla essence and egg. Mix again until combined. Add the flour and beat until you have a smooth dough.
Wrap your biscuit dough in clingfilm and pop in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes. You can leave overnight if you want to do the rolling, cutting and baking the next day.
Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees C (160 fan)/ 350 degrees F / Gas Mark 4.
Roll out the dough until it’s about 3 mm (1/8th inch) thick. For the reindeer I used a 6 cm-diameter round cutter (approx. 2.5 inches). If you use a bigger cutter, you’ll need to give the reindeer larger noses, eyes and antlers when you get to the decoration stage.
Put the raw biscuits onto trays lined with greaseproof paper.
Bake for 10-15 minutes until they start to brown. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
To make the reindeer antlers and eyes you’ll need 25 g / 1 oz chocolate (dark, plain or milk). I used plain but added one drop of peppermint essence because I’m not a fan of anything other than milk chocolate. For the reindeer noses I used mini Smarties. If you decide to make your Christmas reindeer biscuits bigger than mine then you might want to use ordinary sized Smarties or red M&Ms (or any round chocolates in a red crispy shell you can get your hands on!).
Melt your chocolate. I used the microwave and it only took 30 seconds. You can also melt it in a pyrex bowl over a pan of hot water. Pour the chocolate into a piping bag with a very small round piping tip (I used a number 2 tip). Pipe the antler and eyes on each biscuit. I then used a small blob of chocolate to stick the Smarties noses to the biscuits.
I also used a little of the melted chocolate to pipe trunks onto the Christmas tree biscuits. I used coloured writing icing and shop-bought sugar stars and gingerbread men shapes for the rest of the tree decorations.