Cookies without eggs
This recipe is for making cookies without using any egg. It came about because my colleague, Kalpana, had been good enough to taste some of my sample cookies. She asked if I had a recipe for cookies without eggs, as her mother cannot eat them. I also knew that she did not have an electric mixer, so that was out too.
So it was back to the drawing board again.
This recipe is adapted from a Scottish shortbread recipe. It omits the cornflower or rice flour that a real shortbread recipe contains. It does need good, well softened, butter to give it the taste as there is no additional flavoring.
Unsalted butter (softened out of the fridge for two or more hours) -4 oz
Caster sugar – 2 oz
All Purpose flour – 6 oz (plus extra for rolling)
Salt ¼ teaspoon
Two non-stick heavyweight baking sheets
Cookie cutter to suit (3 inch diameter)
Heat the oven to 300 degrees F , Gas Mk 2. If you are not using non-stick baking sheets, grease the baking sheets and cover with a little caster sugar. Place to one side.
Put the butter in the mixing bowl and beat by hand with a wooden spoon to soften it. Add the sugar and beat that in the same way. Add the sifted flour and salt. Beat well to ensure an even mix. Scrape off the spoon from time to time as butter seems to accumulate on the spoon.
When the mixture is evenly mixed, spread some caster sugar on a work surface ready for rolling.
Why use caster sugar? It prevents the sticking when the dough is only slightly moist and it does not leave white marks as flour can do.
Now press the mixture (which looks somewhat crumby) into a paste ball and knead in your hands gently for a minute or two.
Place the ball on the sugared surface and begin to press it flat. As you press it out the edges tend to split. Push them together and continue to flatten the mixture.
Finish off to between 1/4 and 1/8 inch thick by rolling it out gently with the rolling pin. If the mixture sticks to the pin then dust it with sugar.
Using your 3 inch fluted cutter cut out the cookies.
Slide your palette knife under the cookies and lift them on to the baking sheets.
Repeat the process until you have a full batch.
Pop them into the oven until they turn a gorgeous golden brown color, about 20 to 30 minutes.
Allow them to cool for five minutes on their trays. Then use your palette knife to slide them on to the wire rack to cool. Keep in an airtight container for maximum crispness.
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