This is essentially a shortbread but, when you add self-raising flour instead of plain flour, the texture changes and becomes lighter and more crumbly. The French call it sablé Breton so, if you hear somebody talking about that, you can give a knowing look. Serve it with your choice of fruits and cream. To take it up a notch, bake in individual moulds, split the cakes in half, fill with cream and fruit, then place on a serving plate and top with more fruit … but let it tumble on to the plate so it looks natural.
320g unsalted butter, softened, plus more for the tin
320g golden caster sugar
8 egg yolks
450g self-raising flour
pinch of sea salt
icing sugar, to dust
Preheat the oven to 155°C/fan 135°C/gas mark 2. Butter a 23cm springform cake tin and line the base with baking parchment.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until light and creamy (or use an electric whisk or a food mixer fitted with the beater attachment), then gradually incorporate the egg yolks. Add the flour and salt, mixing until thoroughly combined.
Press evenly into the prepared tin with the back of a spoon and bake for 55–60 minutes or until golden brown.
Leave to cool for 10 minutes, then carefully release the catch and turn out on to a wire rack. It will sink in the middle, but this is normal and, if you are serving it as a dessert, you can put whipped cream, berries and liqueur in the hollow.
Otherwise, when you’re ready to serve, just finish with a dusting of icing sugar.
For a chocolate chip shortbread cake, add 150g chopped 70% cocoa solids chocolate with the dry ingredients.