Custard cream hearts

Making these a lot at the moment as I’m practising them for my friend Angie’s wedding. It’s a nigella recipe from feast. I made them about 5 years ago, and have always kept them in mind, but never got round to making them. They are a homemade version of custard creams but miles nicer. Chris took the leftovers to work and when I asked for the feedback, he said there wasn’t any as they were all just inhaled by about 10am! My only change to nigella’s recipe is to add nice strawberry jam, but is is definitely optional, I just thought it’d add an extra something with the ones being used for the afternoon tea at the wedding. Initially I thought they needed more icing, but it’s the perfect amount so long as you roll them really thinly. Otherwise they are crumbly and absorb the icing, whereas you want them crispy.

175g plain flour
3 tbsp custard powder (birds, I edged towards the large tbsp)
1 tsp baking powder
50g butter
50g vegetable shortening (had a pack of trex in the fridge for 4 years after making the last ones, so bought a smaller block this time, just called vegetable fat but seemed fine)
3 tbsp caster sugar
1 egg
1 tbsp milk

Custard cream
1+ tbsp custard powder (says 1, I used a bit more)
100g icing sugar
50g butter
1 tbsp boiling water (don’t overdo this)

Put flour, custard powder and baking powder in processor and mix
Add butter and vegetable shortening and pulse to create a crumbly mixture (I never actually use the pulse function, I just process)
Add sugar and pulse again
Beat egg and milk in a bowl
With the engine running, gradually pour this mixture down the funnel. You may not need all of it to create the dough, I’ve never needed to use it all.
Put in a bowl and chill for 20 mins
Roll dough out on a well-floured surface to about 4mm (this thickness is essential, otherwise your biscuits won’t be crispy)
Cut out your heart shapes. Not sure how many I made but nigella says about 30
You can decorate the hearts. I did indented dots all around the edge of each heart, as suggested by nigella. For this I used the end of the one of the attachments for the electric whisk
Bake on a lined baking tray for 12-15 minutes. I took them out after a strict 13
Make the custard cream by pulsing he ingredients in processor
Sandwich the biscuits by spreading about a teaspoon of cream in each sandwich. Nigella talks a lot about how to do this, and says the biscuits were tricky, but mine were fine. I might have overdone them a bit but it worked. If you’re using jam, spread it on the other biscuit when sandwiching.

These are yummy. They would be great for valentine’s day, weddings, love gifts… Wish me luck for making loads of them for the wedding next week!

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