Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Hungarian Shortbread with Lakkahillo

Welcome to Tuesdays with Dorie! TWD happens twice per month and over 300 bloggers join in baking up some of the fabulous recipes from that TV series hosted by Julia Child that we all know and love (and still watch!?)

This week's recipe is Hungarian Shortbread and with a new gluten-free roommate, I chose to make mine sans gluten. In addition to that I didn't go the traditional rhubarb filling route but used some of my favorite jam from Finland; Lakkahillo! Am I mixing too many traditions here? I think not! You see, one of my first international performance experiences was to a music festival in Hungary, where many of my closest friends formed one of the chamber orchestras I am now apart of. In addition to that, G and I began dating in Hungary! That chamber orchestra also toured to Finland, where G and I spent our first anniversary thanks to our incredible friends and family. It may seem silly to put memories like this into a recipe but I just think it's super meaningful and full of quite a bit of love.

Lakkahillo is an incredible cloud berry jam that is so flavorful and not too sweet, which is definitely a perk in our country where store-bought jam is so very sugary. Seeing as I've had that jar in my fridge for a year or more, trying to savor it slowly, I figured it was finally time to finish it off (pun intended.)

These little bars are a fantastic treat and remind me very much of the texture of lemon bars, which I love.  Made with your favorite jam, these come together in a jiff and with little mess if you follow the instructions to freeze the dough for a little while before grating into your dish.

Gluten-Free Hungarian Shortbread
serves 12

Trying not to eat too many baked goods these days, I halved the recipe. It would also do well with less sugar!!

2 sticks of butter, salted, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup corn starch
1/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup flax seed, ground
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp xantham gum
1/2 cup (or a little more) of jam
powdered sugar for sprinkling

- With a stand mixer, whip butter until smooth. Add sugar and yolks and beat until light and fluffy. Mix dry ingredients together. Combine all to incorporate. Divide dough into halves, wrap with plastic wrap and freeze for 30 minutes or more.
- Remove dough from freezer and preheat your oven to 350. With a block grater, grate half of the dough onto a plate. Sprinkle into a cake pan or a 7x9. Don't press, just spread gently to reach corners of the pan. Top with jam. Grate remaining dough and sprinkle on top. Bake for about 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle generously with powdered sugar and cool to room temperature.