I just can’t figure out where to get short pastry from here. Actually I see no evidence that it actually exists so I don’t even know if you can buy it or it’s just that I’m looking in the wrong places. Actually flaky pastry is a bit of a challenge too – it comes in ready shaped large pie shells for making fruit pies, sometimes you can buy frozen 2 sheets of flat round flaky pastry that you can push into your own pie dish and claim homemade, but no such thing as flaky or short crust pie sheets. I know I know, I should really make my own, if the Orange Niece can do it, then I should be able to. However, no kitchen whiz here so if I attempted it, it would be totally by hand. I had brought the one remaining jar of 2010 Xmas fruit mince with us and really wanted to do some Christmas baking. With The Mister not being a fan of shortbread (but he’ll eat fermented fruit? go figure!) that left me with really wanting to make Xmas fruit mince pies. (Which you also can’t buy over here so no mini pies from Aro Bake for us this year!)
So I attempted it the pastry. Bought a rolling pin ‘specially. Now we all know I’m not the most patient of cooks and this was probably my 3rd go at making pastry, totally by hand. I remained pretty calm actually and after wrapping it up in plastic to put in the fridge I took it into the lounge to show The Mister … as I was about to exclaim how proud I was of my efforts I realized I didn’t have any cookie cutters to make the little rounds! Had to scratch around the kitchen to find 2 things of slightly different sizes that would fit into the muffin tins … came up with the plastic lid off the cocoa and a wine glass – the first couple of attempts at rolling and cutting produced some raggedly thick rounds but I got better with practice! (Remembering Mother’s word to stop fiddling with the dough!)
I managed to squeeze out 18 rounds, with a fair amount of fiddling so expected the pastry to be quite hard and not very shortcake like at all.
Bit of faffing about and concern as to how long to cook them for in the gas oven but they turned out great! Didn’t last long after a few days of taking them to work for morning tea.