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Shortbread Christmas Wreath by Kirsten Tibballs

Two of our favourite things about Christmas are shortbread and Christmas wreaths. 

We’re feeling very lucky, that the talented Kirsten Tibballs was able to combine both of these into one delicious Christmas dessert.

Take a read below and taste the flavours of Christmas with this coconut shortbread with a cinnamon and nutmeg ganache.

As a Christmas treat, use the code QTVX9 to get 20% off Savour Online Classes and spend the festive season cooking with Kirsten Tibballs.

Beginner | Makes: 10 wreaths

Coconut Shortbread Pastry

Makes 30 rings

75g     unsalted butter
50g     pure icing sugar
25g     whole eggs
17g     desiccated coconut
130g   plain flour
1g       salt
1g       baking powder

1.   Place the butter and icing sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.

2.   Mix on low speed until you achieve a smooth paste. When there are no more lumps of butter left, add the eggs and coconut. Mix until combined.

3.   In a separate bowl, sieve the flour, salt and baking powder. Add the sieved dry ingredients to the mixture and combine on a low speed, being careful not to overmix or it will develop the gluten.

4.   Once the pastry has come together, press into a neat, flat square and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Cinnamon & Nutmeg Ganache

140g   Bulla Thickened Cream 35% fat
1g       fresh nutmeg, grated
3g       ground cinnamon
60g     Callebaut 823 Milk Couverture 33.6%
73g     Callebaut 811 Dark Couverture 54.5%

1.       In a saucepan, boil the cream, nutmeg and cinnamon.

2.       Place both the milk and dark couverture in a bowl.

3.       Pour the hot mixture over the couverture and whisk by hand until the chocolate has fully melted.

4.       Cover the top of the bowl with plastic wrap touching the surface. Leave the ganache at room temperature for approx. 1-2 hours until it reaches a piping consistency.

Rolling the Pastry

1.       Lightly dust the bench with flour and cut the pastry in half.

2.       Roll the pastry in two batches. Lightly dust the top of the first half of pastry and roll out to a 3mm thickness with a rolling pin. Keep moving the pastry and dusting it as you go to ensure it doesn’t stick.

3.       Using a 70mm cutter, cut out discs. Cut the centre out of each disc with a 40mm cutter to create rings. Place the rings onto a Silpain mat on top of a perforated baking tray or an aluminium tray lined with baking paper.

4.       Reserve any offcuts and add them to the second batch of fresh dough. Repeat the process until you have 30 discs in total.

5.       Bake for 10-12 minutes at 160˚C.

6.       Allow to cool at room temperature.

Assembly

1.       Transfer the ganache to a disposable piping bag fitted with an 8mm round piping tip.

2.       Pipe a layer of ganache onto the ring. Place another ring on top and gently press it, ensure you don’t press it too hard or the ganache will spill out. Pipe another layer of ganache and set another ring on top.

Garnish

100g   your favourite chocolate, tempered
10       glace cherries
36       whole almonds (skin on)
10       skinned pistachios
36-40 whole roasted hazelnuts
QS      icing sugar

1.       Temper the couverture.

2.       Quarter the glace cherries and cut the pistachios in half.

3.       Prepare a paper piping cone and fill it with a small amount of tempered chocolate.

4.       Pipe a drop of chocolate onto the nuts and cherries and decorate the top of the wreath, using the chocolate to secure them.

5.       Dust with icing sugar prior to serving.

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