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Orange Zest Shortcake, Whipped Cream, Blueberry Coulis (Recipe)

Orange shortcake, whipped cream, blueberry coulis

I don't like baking.

Don't get me wrong - I'm happy to reap the benefits, but for me, life's too short to weigh flour. I know lots of people who think this makes me deficient in some way, but frankly I'd rather have my cakes made for me *cough*.

I don't do desserts either. I might spend hours lovingly preparing a meal, but if my guests want a pud they get (a) fruit, (b) some Ben and Jerry's, or (c) Ocado's finest.

Unfortunately the other day, I was forced to make a pudding for John Torode and Gregg Wallace (the original Puddingface)
. Like I said in the MasterChef cook-off post, I'd found a basic shortbread recipe and then monkeyed with it till I came up with a hypothetical something I could happily call my own.

The first time I actually had a go making my shortcake, it tasted fine, but aesthetically left a little to be desired. In fact, my husband was nice enough to say that it reminded him of the first Ripley Clone in Alien Resurrection. No, I'm not showing you a picture. Anyway, I think that was his own geekoid way of encouraging me to try, try again.

Orange shortcake, whipped cream, blueberry coulis

Orange Zest Shortcake with Whipped Cream and Blueberry Coulis

Serves 4
  • 100g unsalted softened butter
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 100g plain flour
  • 50g cornflour
  • A large orange
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 300ml double cream (ie a standard pot)
  • 200g blueberries (ie a standard pack)
  • Some icing sugar for dusting
Preheat your oven to 160 degrees C.

Whisk the butter and caster sugar until creamy. Work in the flours until it forms a crumb-like dough. Zest the orange, being careful not to include any of the white pith and mix the zest into the shortbread dough.

Now roll the dough out to a little less than 1cm thickness and then cut into shapes. Any freaking shapes you like - the fancier the better. I like stars, me.

Bake the biscuits for 15 minutes and then leave to cool.

Meanwhile, squeeze the juice from your zested orange and then simmer this with half the pack of blueberries and the granulated sugar until it thickens.

Beat the cream with a little caster sugar till it stiffens and then fold in some of the remaining blueberries.

Sieve the blueberry sauce and pour into a pretty pool onto each dish. Sandwich two biscuits with the whipped berries and cream for each person and place on the blueberry sauce.

Scatter the rest of the blueberries around and sift icing sugar on top.

Bob's your uncle.

By the way, here's an extra-special version (possibly NSFW) that I made just for the man who insisted that "those that make their food into shapes lack confidence in their cooking".

To be honest, they're ruddy lucky I didn't make them a shoecake (cake like a shoe).

I still don't like baking.


Suz said…
Oh dear. Your NSFW pud make me bark with laughter just as they found a dead body in Sherlock. Now I look like a right weirdo.

Looks delicious though.
Anonymous said…
I'm just like you: I still haven't understood the process of baking yet .. Cooking gives you the freedom you need to get creative .. but baking.. 150g of flavours, 50g of butter... too boring for me ;-)
meemalee said…
@Suzler - If you barked with laughter, my job here is done. I missed Sherlock, but I get the impression it was kinda brilliant.

@mathildescuisine - Yep, it is boring - glad I'm not alone!
Mr Noodles said…
I wish Gregg Wallace's eggs could cry.......
The Grubworm said…
A standard pot of cream and a standard pack of blueberries - that's my kinda measurement. Like you, i rarely bake and it was a moment of real triumph when my last cake wasn't all runny in the middle.

This looks like a great recipe and the potential for shaping the shortbread is almost endless.

This is a really good dessert, doubly so if you don't usually make them.
chumbles said…
It looks really nice, MiMi, even for someone like me who doesn't like sweet things (apart from Chocolate... *shiver* ... Homer moment). But I know that I'd be left with all the half used packets for ever and a day! Or perhaps it's just that I can't stand baking!
meemalee said…
@Mr Noodles - I'm trying not to think about what that could mean.

@The Grubworm - Yeah, I'm all about the pinch here and dash there. And thank you!

@chumbles - Thanks Chumbles! Another baking refusenik!
Anonymous said…
You're a natural at NSFW baking - maybe a change in career? Yet another blog?
meemalee said…
@Kavey - Imagine!

@ruduss - Two blogs are more than enough but thank you :)
LOVE the NSFW version - just fantastic! I say you start a rude shortbread company immediately - I bought some rude biscuits once from someone on Twitter and they were the most tasteless biscuits ever!
I am the opposite and just don't get why people don't love baking - Obviously except when it goes wrong and I just sulk!
Julia said…
Lol. Well this looks damn good! Orange shortcake sounds fantastic.
meemalee said…
@I heart cupcakes - "Tasteless" or "tasteless"? I think I'll leave the rude baking to you, my dear :)

@Julia - It is fantastic - thank you!
Baking isn't my forte either,though I do really like eating the results.Its all the measuring out,don't have much patience.
Alas they tasted of nothing - lumps of butter and flour - although they did have rude words on, they still weren't good enough to give to a potty mouthed friend as a gift as planned. I'll make my own next time!
meemalee said…
@Northern Snippet - You and me both ;)

@I heart cupcakes - Oh, that's a pity - it might as well have been decorative only