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June is the month in which we celebrate Father's Day here in the UK. Choosing a gift for dad seems pretty easy on Christmas or on his birthday, but come Father's day and we're clean out of ideas.
At Christmastime we can just pick up a catalogue or surf the internet and it's bound to point us in the right direction. On dad's birthday all you need is cake and anything that your dad can have some fun with and we're all set.
For people out there who love a bit of variety this recipe can be split in two to make half chocolate chip biscuits and the other vanilla with lemon topping. Or they can be made as one style, simply add or remove the chocolate as preferred.
Preparation time 15 minutes
Cooking time 15 minutes
Measure out 130g of butter and cut it into slices. Soften the butter by placing the slices into the mixing bowl, cover the bowl with a dry tea towel and leave to rest in a warm place for 30 – 40 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C or gas mark 4.
Grease two baking sheets.
Once the butter is softened, sift in the castor sugar using the sieve to filter out any clumps. Add the vanilla essence. Mix the ingredients with a whisk for 3-4 minutes or until the butter and sugar has blended to become fluffy and creamy in colour. Place the bowl to one side.
Crack the eggshell in half and carefully separate the egg yolk from the white. Keep the egg white in a dish for use later in the recipe. Slip the egg yolk into the mixing bowl and beat together with the other ingredients.
Sieve the flour into the bowl and gently fold it in to the mixture using the spatula. Use the spatula to scrape around the bowl to ensure all of the ingredients are evenly mixed. The mixture should start to stick together and form floury flakes. Keep folding the mix together until it starts to form one ball of dough.
Gradually add the milk until you have a firm doughy consistency that is neither too dry and flaking nor moist enough to stick to the bowl.
At this stage, the dough can be split into two portions if you wish. If you split the dough, place one half to the side for use later in the recipe.
Lightly flour a clean, smooth surface and rolling pin. Ensure you have cold hands. Tip the dough on to the lightly floured surface. Knead the dough between hands, until it is smooth and mouldable. Shape the dough into a large ball and place it in the middle of the floured surface.
Sprinkle a light dusting of flour over the rolling pin to help prevent the dough from sticking. Use the lightly floured rolling pin to gently roll the dough out to approximately 5mm in depth.
Key tip – when rolling dough, use a heavy wooden rolling pin and barely add any downward force to it, gradually roll it out into a circular shape by moving the rolling pin in a clockwise motion in and out, like rolling a flower print.
Using the cutters, cut biscuits out of the dough and transfer them to a baking sheet. When you can no longer cut any more full shapes out, roll the dough back up and re-roll it out again. Ensure you have cool hands for this as it helps prevent the butter from over softening and the dough becoming too sticky. Use more flour if necessary, to prevent the dough from sticking to surfaces it comes into contact with.
Once all the dough has been used up, slide the baking sheet carrying the dough biscuits onto a baking tray. Put the tray into the oven to bake for 10-12 minutes.
Return the other half of the dough to the mixing bowl. Add the chocolate chips and mix them into the dough.
Re-flour the surface and rolling pin. Follow the steps as above to roll the dough out again. Using the cutters, cut out more biscuits and lay them on second sheet of baking paper.
Going back to the egg white from earlier, gently mix the egg white with a fork. Once the first sheet of biscuits have baked for 8-10 minutes, using oven gloves remove the hot baking tray from the oven. Careful not to burn worksurfaces, place the baking tray on to a heatproof surface. Brush the egg white over the top of the part baked biscuits. Sprinkle a dusting of caster sugar over the biscuits and return the tray to the oven to finish baking.
Bake for a further 3-4 minutes until the biscuits turn golden.
Once cooked, remove the biscuits from the oven and slide the baking paper containing the biscuits onto a cooling rack.
Slide the second piece of baking paper containing the uncooked biscuits onto the baking tray and put in the oven for 8-10 minutes.
While the first batch of biscuits is cooling, sieve the icing sugar into a bowl. Mix the icing sugar, water, food colouring and lemon essence together until smooth and gel-like.
Drizzle the icing over the biscuits and leave to set.
Once the chocolate chip cookies are turning golden, using oven gloves, remove them from the oven and slide on to a cooling rack.
Key tip – don’t move the biscuits until they have fully cooled as they are soft when warm and will break easily.
Once cooled, present the cookies on a plate and serve.
We have a variety of jams, preserves and honey - which can also be used for baking homemade jam tarts with the kids: London Honey Co Isle of Purbeck Honey, Thursday Cottage Rhubarb & Ginger Jam, Hartleys Best Apricot and Bonne Maman Strawberry Conserve, Raspberry Conserve and Bonne Maman Apricot Conserve
When it comes to finding a gift for fathers day things get complicated. Fathers day is about showing your dad how much he means to you and acknowledging him for all the support he's given you throughout your life.
There really isn't a single gift that can do all that, just like there isn't a single gift that can show your mom how much you love her on mothers day but you get away with flowers. Fathers day doesn't have an easy gift like that to turn to. Normally people will suggest things like ties, shirts or other apparel items but these are more everyday use things than they are gifts and if you look for something more formal, the whole question of 'will dad use them or not' arises and you're back to square one.
When buying a gift for dad you can take a lot of pressure of yourself if you come to terms with the fact that no single gift will be able to spell out everyone of your feelings. The gift that you get your dad is just supposed to be an acknowledgment, you've never tried to re-pay mom's love so you shouldn't try and return dad's efforts in raising you with a gift.
Shop online and buy family food gifts as treat. For the morning people out there choose one of our assorted tea gift boxes
Basilur Specialty Tea Classic Gift Box
Basilur Oriental Assorted Specialty Tea Collection - Tea Book II
Basilur Earl Grey Tea Bags
Basilur Classic Assorted Tea Bags - 20 Foil sachets with double chamber teabags x (1.5g ) 2g x 12 in cardboard boxes.
An exceptional collection of delightful tea blends of your choice. An Assortment of English Breakfast, Earl Grey, English Afternoon, Ceylon Orange Pekoe, Darjeeling and Sencha teabags.
When buying a gift for your dad you need to do what you do for mom, give him a treat. Your gifts for mom are an indulgence and are supposed to make her life easier in some way so why not give dad something he'll consider a treat. A very common gift is food. Men like to eat, there's no denying it so giving dad a food gift is a good idea. Fathers day gift baskets are one of the popular and more easy to find gifts for dad. If you're not sure what kind of gift basket will be suitable try fruit baskets or fruit bouquets. Fruit bouquets are fruit arrangements arranged in fun sports themed containers, like golf balls, basketballs and even NASCAR racing cars.
A fathers day gift should either give your dad a relaxing or fun experience or it should make him feel special. Spending a day with him, calling him up specially or even letting him teach you to do something will work just as well.
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