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    > Recipe: Shortbread Heart Lollipops

    Recipe: Shortbread Heart Lollipops

    Shortbread heart lollipops, from Stacie Bakes cookbook. Photo courtesy of Stacie Bakes
    Shortbread heart lollipops, from Stacie Bakes cookbook. Photo courtesy of Stacie Bakes

    Shortbread + Heart + Lollipop – wait, what’s not to like exactly? When I asked my 9-year old what recipe from Stacie Bakes she wanted to feature, this one got the vote even if “you know it might be difficult to do all the pretty sugar decorations just like in the picture.” To tell the truth, she just wanted to lift the lollipop out of the picture and eat it. But hey, 3D printing’s not quite there so she thought about it. We could make them for a birthday! The recipe yields 12 lollipops. That’s 12 happy kids if I count correctly. The only glitch is the next birthday in our family is 19 excruciating days away. On second thought – why don’t we make them today? And that’s how a ridiculous amount of butter made its way out of our bridge but it’s all for a good cause. Tomorrow my husband and I are swimming 10K as a team. We’ll need a treat getting out of the river. I’ll be waiting for these heart-shaped lollipops!

    Now the recipe, in Stacie “Beehive” Stewart’s words!

    Shortbread heart lollipops

    This is my standard shortbread recipe, passed down from generation to generation and now on to you. It’s pretty simple, and is the recipe I used for dessert in the MasterChef invention test. You’ll need to buy a heart cutter (not a huge investment) and some lollipop sticks, which you can get online or from craft and cake supply stores. They look pretty with ribbon tied around the sticks. A beautiful handmade gift for Valentine’s Day.

    Makes 12 lollipops

    • 400g/14oz/3¼ cups plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
    • 300g/10½oz/1¼ cups unsalted butter, cold AND cubed, plus  extra for greasing
    • 150g/5½oz/¾ cup caster (superfine) sugar
    • seeds scraped from 1 vanilla pod (optional)

    To decorate

    • 150g/5½oz fondant icing sugar
    • food colouring of your choice
    • sprinkles and decorations of your choice

    1. Put the flour, butter, sugar and vanilla seeds, if using, in a bowl and either rub in with your fingertips, pulse in a food processor or combine in a food mixer. Press the mixture into a tight ball, wrap in cling film and chill for 10 minutes.

    2. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/gas mark 5. Lightly grease a large baking sheet. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1cm/½in thick (don’t roll it too thin or the sticks won’t go in properly; I find it easier to roll small pieces at a time). Cut out heart shapes and place them on the prepared baking sheet.

    3. Press a lollipop stick gently into the point of each heart, making sure about 1cm/½in of the stick is in the shortbread so it stays in place once baked. Bake for 15 minutes. Leave to cool completely on a wire rack before handling or the sticks will come out.

    4. To decorate, mix the fondant icing sugar with boiling water according to the packet instructions. Colour with food colouring if you like. Spoon over the hearts or carefully dip the front of the hearts and decorate with sugar sprinkles.

     

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