On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me a partridge in a pear tree.... These shortbread pears remind me of the 12 days of Christmas song. I was given something similar to these for Christmas and the whole family really enjoyed them so I wanted to tried to make them myself and here is what I came up with.. These are prefect for gifts not only Christmas time. It's also my families tradition to serve shortbread biscuits to visitors who go to visit a new born baby, these would be ideal.
- Preheat oven to 150°C/300oF/Mark2.
- Line oven trays with baking parchment and put the tray in the oven.
- In a large bowl sifted flour, cinnamon and almond meal. Mix well. Set aside.
- In another bowl beat butter, caster sugar and vanilla essence until light and creamy.
- Combine flour mixture and butter mixture, (may need to use hands) to form a dough.
- Roll the mixture into a large plum size or walnut sized balls and then shape each ball into a pear. (The more smaller you make them the more cloves you would need).
- Place the base of the clove (star shape end) on the top of the pear to the form the core.
- Place the pears on hot tray and bake in the oven for 12 minutes or until pale golden. (Please note if you are making them plum size baked them for 12 minutes or until pale golden, but if you are making walnut size it would be quicker).
- Remove tray and allow pears to stand on trays for 10 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool.
- Dust lightly with icing sugar. Store.
- Note: Please let everyone who is eating the shortbread pear knows it's a real clove on the top because they may want to remove it before eating.
I had a few hiccups while making these, ( 4.5oz of butter is 9 Tbs, everybody! That is one stick plus 1 Tbs.) but the effort was completely worth it. The clove-stems were my favorite part. I did have some trouble getting them to look perfect. Mine flattened a bit while baking so next time I will try chilling the dough before putting them in the oven or maybe shaping them a bit taller and skinnier than what I think looks good to compensate for the flattening in the oven. I will practice until I get it down though because besides being absolutely lovely to look at, they have a nice, light, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread flavor. Thanks for sharing!
Mine didn't come out as good as Chef floWer's more like gourds than pears, sure that just means I need more practise. Was aiming for 12 but got 11 which still bought the sugar content down below 5g which meant the DM and myself could have a guilt free treat with our morning or afternoon tea. Thank you Chef floWer. Made for Edition 3 - Make My Recipe - a game of tag.