The first rule about Fight Club…no, wait.
The first rule about cooking with kids is to throw your expectations out of the window. Unless you are incredibly lucky it is doubtful you will emerge from a baking session with neat and tidy goodies, a kitchen that looks anything less than a disaster zone or without flour in your hair and a child who is covered in dough, butter and has somehow got jam in their ear.
It will be messy. There may be an uncontrollable urge to take over. There will be a certain amount of stress and possibly a tantrum while you wait for the oven to do its thing. The results will have a certain, um, rustic look to them. But it is fun and the sense of achievement a small person can gain from baking their own biscuits is huge.
These simple jam and cream biscuits are popular in our kitchen at the moment. Though there’s a few steps involved, nothing takes too much time and most of it can be done with just a little supervision.
Izzy made these and the pride on her face as she shared them out with our friends and family was a good thing to see. Admittedly I would have preferred them to be a little neater and for the central holes to be much smaller but they were her biscuits so her choice.
The dough is made in a food processor so once the ingredients are in, small hands can turn the dial while you keep an eye on proceedings. Once chilled, it’s easy to work with and can take a fair amount of rolling and re-rolling. If you’re baking these when it’s hot though, I do recommend working with half of the dough at a time and keeping the rest in the fridge.
I’d also recommend a shaking of icing sugar on the counter before rolling out to prevent sticking.
We chose to make ours jammy dodger style, with a hole cut out of the upper biscuits. Izzy was delighted with these as the cut out dough made perfect sized biscuits for the dolls gathered for a tea party.
PS Have you seen that I currently have a giveaway for the Sainsbury’s magazine cookery book? They’re celebrating 20 years of publication and it’s a rather useful little number so pop over to throw your name in the hat!
Simple jam and cream biscuits that take you straight back to your childhood and are also really simple for small people to make (mostly) by themselves!
- 175g plain flour
- 125g butter, cold and cut into cubes
- 50g light brown sugar
- 100g butter, softened
- 125g icing sugar, sifted
- About 3 tbsps jam, we used strawberry
- Icing sugar for rolling and dusting over when finished
- Biscuit cutters, 2 different sizes – one smaller than the other – if you want to make the top biscuit with a hole. Alternatively use the same cutter for all of the biscuits.
- Place the flour and butter into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add the sugar and pulse again several times until the dough begins to become sticky and come together. Tip the dough out onto the work surface (you may want to dust with flour) and use your hands to bring it together properly. Wrap tightly in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 20 – 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 160c fan and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.
- Divide the dough in half (pop the other half back in the fridge if it’s hot) and roll out on a icing sugar dusted surface. The dough may crack but press it back together with your fingers. Stamp out biscuits with your cutter, laying them on the baking trays. Gather together and re-roll the dough as needed. Do the same with the other half of the dough, remembering to cut out a shape in the middle with your smaller cutter if you are doing so.
- Bake for 10 – 12 minutes until golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the buttercream, beat the butter and icing sugar together until well combined, pale and fluffy.
- Once the biscuits are cool, spread half of the biscuits with buttercream. Top with a thin layer of jam and then sandwich another biscuit (with a hole in) on top. Leave to set for about 30 minutes.