Disappearing Shortbread [BWJ]

Hungarian Shortbread & Maracuya JamYears ago, shortbread became our staple dessert on nights we didn’t want to dirty up too many dishes. It was quick and simple, flaky and delicious. My roommate even began to buy special shortbread pans where you would press in the dough and when it was cut and flipped out, there would be designs puffed into the top. While the shortbread didn’t always flip as easily as we would have liked, it tasted good all the same.

As I looked at the recipe this week, I was almost aghast. No “pressing” the shortbread dough into the pan? No patting it down to make a lovely even layer? Instead the dough is…grated? You can tell, I was incredibly doubtful about how this would come out. But, I pressed on (no pun intended) and decided we were on board.

Hungarian ShortbreadGiven that there is no rhubarb here, I was trying to come up with a good alternative. With rhubarb being tart, I decided to make a quince jam, thinking the tartness would match the original recipe. But…my quince was watery and never came together as I would have liked. So my next alternative was actually easier – passionfruit jam (from a jar). I adore the pucker-up taste of passionfruit.

The dough was grated, the jam was spread and Hungarian Shortbread was served up.

Hungarian ShortbreadAnd the Hungarian Shortbread was eaten up. Seriously…delicious. This was a delicious combination of soft and sweet and I loved every bite. All three bites that I had. My DH seemed to serve himself one after the other until they disappeared. I think these would be a really easy bar to whip up when unexpected company drops by. If I had the dough ready & frozen, I could grate, bake, smear, grate, bake, serve.

Baker’s Notes:

  • I used less sugar than was called for in the recipe and was completely satisfied by the sweetness.
  • I made half the original recipe and baked it in a square glass pan.
  • Next time, I will use a bit more jam. Based on the original measurements, I used 1/2 cup of jam, but I think i would enjoy a smidgen more. Maybe a red one. Or maybe, manjar blanco (dulco de leche). Yum.
  • I baked the bottom layer for 20 minutes before adding the jam layer. Once the top crust was in place, I baked about 30 more minutes.
  • Next time, make more.

Make your own Hungarian Shortbread!




Hungarian Shortbread was hosted by Lynette of 1smallkitchen and Cher of The Not So Exciting Adventures of a Dabbler… for Tuesdays With Dorie.

Gretchen Noelle

My love of food was cultivated early on by my family but has come alive while living in Peru. During the 12 years of living in Lima, Peru, I have also enjoyed numerous trips to other areas of the country. Here on Provecho Peru you will find Peruvian recipes in English, American favorites prepared overseas, news about Peruvian Cuisine and interesting tidbits about life in Peru.

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35 Responses

  1. Passionfruit!! Good one… i substituted with plum!! Yours really came out well…:)

  2. smarkies says:

    Oooh… passionfruit! That sounds delicious!

  3. Ckay says:

    Your shortcake looks delicious.
    I loved it, and though I’d reduced the butter by 1/3 it still was great!
    Thanks for baking along!

    Passionfruit jam… ooooh I must be dreaming! I don’t think they’ll sell it in Switzerland.
    Shall we swap? I send you the rhubarb 🙂

  4. Pati says:

    It looks great! I love passion fruit, I will try it on my next batch!

  5. Lola says:

    Passionfruit sounds like a great idea and your pictures turned out very nice.

  6. iluvsweets says:

    Passion fruit! Oh, that sounds delicious. The adjustments you made sound great. Beautiful results!

  7. Susan says:

    Nice post. I made 1/2 the recipe to, and was very tempted to pre-bake the bottom. Good ideas!

  8. Clivia says:

    Your squares look perfect!

  9. Judy says:

    I think you were very wise to bake only half the dough, especially because it freezes so well. Your shortbread looks very delicious.

  10. I made it with quince, since there´s no rhubarb, but the passionfruit is even better. I have some in my fridge, saved from the last ones of the summer and will make it soon! Nice pictures!

  11. Rebecca says:

    That is beautiful! The fruit must have tasted wonderful.

  12. Alice says:

    I think using these for a Christmas cookie would be great and yours turned out SO perfect! 🙂

  13. melissa says:

    passion fruit–that is genius!

  14. Karen says:

    hm, I don’t think I have every had passionfruit. Guess I need to try it. Fun to have pans that make designs on the shortbread! 🙂

  15. Cher says:

    Very lovely – I am sure the passionfruit jam made for a wonderful filling 🙂

    Thanks for baking a long this week.

  16. Kathy says:

    Simply beautiful…passionfruit sounds luscious!

  17. Peggy says:

    Your bottom layer looks so fluffy. I think I pressed too much on that one — my top was much better. Great substitution.

  18. Hi Gretchen, What beautiful shortbread you made! I love the lightness and fluffy look. I think I over-baked mine because I didn’t feel the middle was set enough. Next time I may use less fruit (I used 2 cups). I also really like the idea of using less sugar in the crust. I am glad to know it still tasted good and I will do as you did next time and use less sugar. Thanks! Blessings, Catherine

  19. Katrina says:

    Ooh, passionfruit jam–yum. Love the yellow. This shortbread is dangerously good, enough that I stuck it all in the freezer for later. 😉

  20. Mary Hirsch says:

    Gretchen, This is why I like baking with people from around the world. Quince or passionfruit would never have been my choice of filling for Hungarian shortbread. Not in a million years. But now, since I really like this pastry bar, I will try them. When I make them again, I am going to use less sugar and less butter, too. And, your pre-baking the bottom layer was smart. I didn’t read the pre-chatter comments so didn’t do that and I felt my bottom layer was not entirely done. It still was delicious, however. I loved making these bars.

  21. Alicia says:

    Passionfruit sounds lovely! I agree with adding a bit more jam next time:)

  22. Ferda says:

    I love quince, sorry that your attempt for the jam didn’t work out.. Passionfruit sounds delicious though..

    I halved the dough recipe but used the whole jam recipe by mistake.. It was very very tasty.. I am happy for my mistake after reading your comment about, you would like more jam in it..

  23. Melanie says:

    I’ve never had passionfruit before. I must try now! Wonderful pictures!!
    We loved this one too. I don’t have much experience making shortbread so I didn’t really have any expectations of how it should turn out. All I know is that this was yummy!!!

  24. sanya says:

    Passionfruit jam! That sounds amazingly delicious! I doubled the amount of rhubarb jam and loved the taste, it did make the shortbread a bit soggy though!
    Love your photos!

  25. Trudy says:

    My sister Patty (who is also doing the twd baking) linked to your post and your site. I was so excited to read some of your posts – I lived in Peru from 1967-1976 and remember so well the challenges of learning to cook in Peru – and how delicious the food was! I look forward to reading more of your posts; I’m bookmarking your site right now!

    Happy cooking!

  26. Marlise says:

    I love your jam selections. And the pictures make your cake look delicious.

  27. Saira says:

    Lovely Shortbread 🙂

  28. Allison says:

    Definitely not traditional shortbread (or at least not the tradition I am used to). Passion fruit sounds great. Now I am wishing I had chosen a more exotic jam.

  29. Andrea says:

    Hello Gretchen, what lovely pictures you took of the different stages of preparation – your passionfruit shortbread looks so delicious – great choice! Love your post!

    Thank you also for your very nice comment – one of my daughters just told me to say “Hello” and is giggling right now, she was the first one I showed your comment to, her name is Gretchen. So she is sending a big “Hello” from Gretchen in Germany to Gretchen in Peru!

  30. Looks like you found a new favorite. Great idea using passionfruit.

  31. Kim says:

    Your pictures are beautiful!

  32. Elaine says:

    Your photos are lovely. I bet the shortbread was delicious with passionfruit jam.

  33. Hello, this shortbread looks so delicious mmmm…. 😉
    I told you that i was so happy that you’d come back and because of that i left i present for you in my blog. Hope you’ll like it


  34. Teresa says:

    I think passionfruit jam sounds like a great substitution. This was so wonderfully good. If it wasn’t so rich, I don’t think any would have lasted overnight.

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