Saffron Shortcake

A scrumptious dessert, Saffron Shortcake is crisp shortcake with cooked, fresh fruit poured over the top. Almost any tart fruit may be substituted for the damsons if these are not available. Serve with lots of thick cream.

4-6 SERVINGS

3 oz. plus

1 teaspoon butter

8 oz. flour

1 teaspoon baking powder teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon ground saffron

3 oz. plus

3 tablespoons soft brown sugar

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 fl. oz. milk

6 fl. oz. sweet white wine

1 lb. damsons, halved and stoned

1 tablespoon arrowroot

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200CC). Using the teaspoon of butter, grease a 9-inch sandwich tin and set aside.

Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and saffron into a large mixing bowl. Using a metal spoon, stir in the 3 ounces of sugar. Using your fingertips, rub the remaining butter into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles fine bread- crumbs. With a fork, beat in the eggs, then the milk.

Spoon the dough into the prepared tin and smooth the top over with the back of the spoon. Place the tin in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the shortcake is golden brown and firm to the touch.

Remove the tin from the oven. Turn the cake out on to a wire rack to cool.

In a large saucepan, dissolve the remaining sugar in the wine over moder-ate heat. When the sugar has dissolved, add the damsons, cover the pan and reduce the heat to low. Simmer the damsons for 10 to 15 minutes or until they are tender but still firm.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the damsons from the pan and set aside.

Place the arrowroot in a small bowl and, using a wooden spoon, stir in 2 tablespoons of the cooking liquid. Add the dissolved arrowroot to the remaining liquid in the pan, stirring constantly until the sauce is fairly thick and smooth. Stir in the cinnamon and return the damsons to the pan. Simmer for a further 2 minutes, basting the damsons gently with the sauce. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool. When the damsons

Sag Gohst from India is a fabulous mixture of spinach, lamb cubes and lots of spices. and sauce are cool, place the shortcake in a shallow serving dish. Pour over the damsons and sauce and serve at once.

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