Jamie says this is the best ever shortbread. I have a confession to make. I can bake cakes, puddings, pastry, bread. For some reason, though, I am not very good at making shortbread. I've tried a few recipes. First I butchered one of Delia's - probably because I couldn't find the requisite semolina flour. Then I ruined a batch of Bill Granger's - in my defence, I still think his had too much butter in. I did manage to make shortbread a couple of times, but it was never quite right and I never knew why. Hmm.
Anyway I made this shortbread on Sunday night, in the ten minute gap between washing up and Jane Eyre on television, while my husband ranted away in the background about mad people baking at night and messing up the kitchen. And it was easy as can be - so easy that even shortbread-challenged me managed to make it and still watch Jane Eyre save Rochester from burning to death in his bed. I didn't have the required square cake tin (I can feel Lakeland calling me) so I made it in a round springform tin. It worked - crumbly, buttery, really and truly the best shortbread I've tasted, never mind made. I took pieces in for colleagues, who raved about it too. So this shortbread could become a habit.