Slow roasted tomatoes for canapes and salads

RECIPE: Parmesan Shortbreads

These little biscuits are so tasty, but be warned, they can be quite addictive!  The recipe was shared to me many years ago by Rosie Davies from Nunney in Somerset.

Although I have adapted it slightly over time, firstly to suit our catering company and now at the cookery school, it is definitely one of the most popular biscuits we have ever made.



Makes 40 – 50 

Canape bases or nibbles to serve with wine

Preparation 15 minutes 

Bake 10 -12 minutes 

Total 40 minutes 

to cook in batches 


100 g hard cheese such as cheddar or parmesan finely grated

100 g unsalted butter, cubed

125 g plain flour



Your favourite seasonings such as 

Fresh rosemary or thyme finely chopped

¼ teaspoon celery salt or a pinch of chilli or cayenne pepper.


Set oven to 190 C or gas Mark 4

Slide grid shelf on the floor of your AGA roasting oven and place plain shelf over to bake one tray at a time.  Or bake on shelved two and three of AGA baking oven, swopping over half way during cooking time.

Add all of the dry ingredients to a bowl.

Add the butter and rub together using your fingertips or whizz in the food processor.

Lightly flour the work surface and briefly knead dough until smooth.

Divide the mixture in half – roll as evenly as possible to the thickness of a pound coin.

Using a shaped biscuit cutter, make small biscuits to use as canapé

Transfer to linned baking sheets using a palette knife.

Bake in conventional stove on middle shelf for 15-18 minutes or in the AGA as above biscuits are firm to the touch and light golden.

Cool on a rack and store in an airtight tin when cold.

Alternatively …

Roll the mixture into some greaseproof paper to form a sausage shape, roll the shaped dough into some crushed peppercorns and chill.  Once firm slice into discs about 4 mm thick and bake as above.



Ideal as a canape base…

Pesto past with slow roasted tomatoes

Tapenade with feta

Crème fraiche with smoked trout

Mushroom pate with truffle oil

Roasted beetroot with cream cheese and dill

Fig & Parma ham


Notes for cooks

The biscuit bases will continue to brown if left on the hot baking trays once they are removed from the oven.

Getting ahead: make the dough up to one month ahead of time, wrap well and freeze.  Defrost in the fridge, roll out and bake as required.

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