Martha Stewart Living Radio: The Radio Blog

Perfect Shortbread Straight from Scotland

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To celebrate NY Tartan Week, we invited Michael Smith, head chef at The Three Chimneys located on the Isle of Skye in Scotland, to join us on "Morning Living." He not only came to the studio donning tradtional Scottish garb, but he also brought a few recipes to share with our listeners. Considering he's the chef at one of Scotland's finest restaurants, we're pretty confident you'll love these.

Listen to Michael explain why his shortbread is the best in the world and then check out the recipe below.

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Three Chimneys Shortbread

Ingredients
3 cups plain flour
3/4 cup white rice flour
1 1/2 cups slightly salted Scottish butter
1/2 cups caster sugar

1. Cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Work the sifted the flour and rice flour into the creamed mixture until it forms a firm paste.
2. Knead it lightly on a well-floured board. Roll it out until quite thin and cut biscuit shapes with cutter of your choice.
3. Using a palette knife, lift the biscuits onto a well-buttered baking sheet.
4. Bake on the center shelf on medium heat until pale golden in colour.
5. Remove from oven and sprinkle liberally with caster sugar while still warm.
6. Lift on to wire tray to cool and firm-up. Store in an airtight tin.

Talisker & Heather Honey Cranachan 

Ingredients
1 1/4 cups fresh double cream
1 tablespoon thick heather honey
1 generous tablespoon Talisker malt whisky
1 tablespoon toasted** medium oatmeal (not "fine", "pinhead" oatmeal or rolled oats)
2 punnets (approx 7 3/4 ounces) fresh raspberries

1. Whisk the cream together with the honey and whisky until thick, but still floppy.  Fold in the oatmeal.  This will thicken the cream a little more.
2. Wash the fruit and divide it between 4 serving glasses. Pile the Cranachan on top of the raspberries and serve.

**To toast oatmeal: spread a thin layer of medium oatmeal over a flat baking tray and leave in the bottom of a warm oven until it darkens in colour.  Once cooled, the oatmeal can be stored in an airtight container and used when required.

Three-Salmon Kedgeree
Serves 6-8

Ingredients
Basmati Rice measured up to 2 1/4 cups on measuring jug
16-ounce piece of organic Scottish salmon fillet, skin on
2 bay leaves
A few sprigs parsley with stalks
1 sprig fennel with stalk
1 teaspoon white peppercorns
Pinch of Maldon sea salt
2 ounces fish stock
1 teaspoon curry powder
3 large eggs hardboiled, cooled, and chopped
4 spring onions
4.5 oz hot-smoked salmon
4 1/2 ounces peat-smoked salmon
2 tablespoons mixed chopped chives, parsley, dill, chervil
A little butter and fresh double cream for serving

1. Put the salmon fillet, water, wine, lemon slices, onion slices, bay leaves, parsley sprigs, fennel sprig, white peppercorns, and sea salt in a metal dish or saucepan deep enough to take the piece of salmon fillet.  The liquid should reach at least halfway up the container, almost covering the fish.  Place on a low heat and allow the liquid to come to simmering point, cover with a lid, cook over low heat for 3 minutes (or more, depending upon the thickness of the fillet) turn off the heat, leave the lid or foil in place and leave to cool.

2. Remove the piece of fish, place on one side and strain the cooking liquor through a sieve, over a bowl.  Discard the ingredients trapped in the sieve and pour the poaching liquor into a measuring jug.  You will need 2 ounces to cook the rice. 

3. Put the rice in a saucepan with the fish stock, bring to a boil, cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer on a low heat for 8 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave to stand for 15 minutes before removing lid.

4. While the rice is cooking, remove the skin and any bones from the salmon, flake it into a large mixing bowl.  Add the finely chopped hard-boiled eggs, chopped spring onions, flaked hot-smoked salmon, and the peat-smoked salmon sliced into small pieces.

5. Once the rice is cooked, add it to the salmon mixture.  Fold ingredients together.  It is easiest to do this with a large metal spoon. Just before serving, stir in the chopped fresh herbs and check the seasoning, adding a little more salt (remember the smoked fish will add saltiness to the finished dish) and freshly ground white pepper.

6. To serve, add a small knob of butter and a tablespoonful of double cream per person and reheat slowly and thoroughly over a low heat. Alternatively, this dish reheats in a microwave very successfully.  Serve piping hot with a wedge of lemon.

Comments (2)

  • i recently moved and for the momwnt can,t find my recipe for scottish shortbread. i have been all over the web for two hours, looked at many many recipes under the heading of SCOTTISH SHORT BREAD ................only yours knew that it must contain "rice flour". thanks C.K.

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