Monday, 25 February 2013

ANZAC Biscuits

While I was perusing some of my cook books recently, I read Nigella's original inspiration for her Grasshopper Pie recipe, she was watching television at home with her family and became absorbed by the main character devouring slices of the pie on screen. This made me laugh, because I do this all the time, although, mainly while I'm reading.
Last week, I was reading a soppy romance novel which was situated in Australia, the heroine was baking these biscuits (all of course while making doe eyes at her hero!!). I was hooked, on the biscuits that is, (perhaps I missed the whole point of the book!). In the book there was talk of cinnamon, but I wanted an original recipe so I Googled ANZAC biscuits and was very pleasantly surprised by this simple and tasty recipe. These ANZAC (Australian New Zealand Army Corps) biscuits are an eggless, sweet chewy biscuit, perfect for lunch boxes and seducing tall dark heroes in romance novels!

Makes 40 approx

90g Porridge Oats
150g Plain Flour
75g Dessicated coconut
200g Caster sugar
110g Butter
1 tbsp Golden syrup
2 tbsp Boiling water
1 tsp Bicarbonate of soda

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas Mark 4, line two large baking sheets with baking paper. Combine the porridge, flour, coconut and sugar in a large bowl.

Melt the butter and golden syrup together in a small jug in the microwave or over a low heat in a saucepan. Meanwhile mix the bicarbonate of soda and boiling water together until it starts to fizz. Pour the bicarbonate of soda mixture into the melted butter.

Add the now fizzing butter mixture into the dry ingredients, stir to combine, add more boiling water if needed until a soft pliable dough is achieved (I usually add about 2-3tbsp more boiling water).

Place hazelnut sized balls of dough on the baking sheets about 5cm apart, flatten slightly (with wet fingers) and bake for about 10- 14 minutes or until they are slightly golden around the edges.

Each oven is different and my temperamental oven is different nearly every time I use it, so my advice is to watch and time the first batch closely until you are happy they are nicely golden, usually 11-12 minutes for me.

Allow to cool on the baking tray for a couple of minutes or until firm enough to transfer to a wire rack.

Store in a an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Recipe with thanks to Bob Lawson, an ANZAC present at the Gallipoli landing and the Australian War Memorial website. 

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