Thursday, 2 August 2007

Peanut Butter and Jam Jewels

They look beautiful, like the sort of jewels worn by fairy-tale princesses - Nigella Lawson

Heh! If you are Princess Fiona maybe!
The verdict:
Unusual or substituted ingredients: I used plum jam on half and peach jam on the other half (not strawberry as suggested - don't like the pips!). Best to use a fairly solid jam which doesn't have large pieces of fruit in it, as this makes it easier to spoon into the indentations. Nigella says the jam is supposed to go a bit runny and then harden (into the "jewels") but mine didn't do that. It didn't make any difference to the eating!

Special utensils or cookware: None. Just an electric mixer for the creaming. Nigella suggests using your thumb to make the jam indentations, but I found a pate knife with a nice rounded bottom and used that. Even so, the indentations rose and practically disappeared during baking - luckily they are soft enough to re-indent once you take out of the oven. Then you spoon the jam in. I wonder if it might be easier to spoon the jam into the indentations before you bake them (which is what my mother does with her Jam Drops).

Repeatability: Yes, I would make these again. Vary the jam for interest!
Sauciness: More like sticky, whilst cooking anyway - you have to refrigerate the dough for at least an hour after mixing - it is very sticky (yep, peanut butter will do that!!) and refrigerating makes it much easier to manage when rolling the dough balls. And, as I discovered, you can easily refrigerate for a whole day, as I made the mixture on Saturday morning but didn't get a chance to bake them until Sunday afternoon.

Overall pleasure level: Combining one of the best things to come out of the US (good ol' PB&J) into a biscuit is clearly a recipe for biscuity goodness. These are an 8 for me.