Stamped Sugar Biscuit Favours

We've found a tasty use for our wonderful stamps - for stamping messages and pictures on sugar biscuits! Packaged in one of our goody bags or pillow boxes, these biscuits are the perfect handmade favours to be enjoyed with coffee at the end of the feast, or taken home. Or hand them round displayed gorgeously on plates... You could even use our letter stamps to spell out quirky messages!

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We are hardly ever (okay, never) bakers and pictured is our first attempt - so if we can do it, you can!  They're surprisingly tasty - like crisp shortbread, and the salt and vanilla adds a sophisticated edge. Don't be tempted to sub margarine for the butter - you need the stiffness of the cold butter to make the dough firm enough to roll and cut. And do use a virgin stamp - not one that's already been used with ink...

To make about 60 sugar biscuits you will need:

340 g butter, softened

400 g white sugar

4 eggs

5 ml vanilla extract

625 g plain flour (we liked half brown, half white)

6 g baking powder

6 g salt

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In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix well. Cover then chill the dough for at least one hour (or overnight). We suggest rolling this amount out in two batches, keeping half of the dough in the fridge as you work. Preheat oven to 200 degrees C.  On a floured surface, roll out the dough fairly thinly - 1/2 cm or so. Cut out the biscuits - we used a champagne flute to get the size pictured, although biscuit cutters would be easier for big batches (how about hearts?).  Place the biscuits about 2 cm apart on greased baking trays, then stamp them gently but firmly with birds, butterflies, 'With Love', 'Mr & Mrs'... Take your pick!  Then pop into the oven for 6 - 8 minutes. Any unused dough can go back in the fridge to be rolled again once chilled.

Practise ahead before the big day, and test keeping qualities - we reckon they stay good for at least a week in an airtight tin.

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