I don’t like conventions much (really? I surprise myself). I appreciate tradition and rules because I think they have value – though, I’m not a stickler for them. But conventions (we can argue semantics later) seem much less intentional and much more arbitrary. You may completely disagree, that’s fine! I’m not an English major, I’m a History major, so that might give you some insight into my opinion (and my lack of semantic finesse). Point is, I like breaking the rules sometimes (don’t get too excited, remember this is a blog about baking, not social theory or my rebellious childhood)…
So when it comes to ANZAC biscuits you won’t be surprised that I like to make them all year round (I told you not to get excited)! Why would you limit yourself to one day in the year when there are such tasty (not to mention easy and pragmatic – goodness, a pragmatic biscuit!) biscuits to be had! (Apologies if that seems insensitive – my consumption of ANZAC biscuits and my thoughts on ANZAC day itself are very separate things, so please don’t think that the only thing I like about ANZAC day is the food!)
That’s why I take full advantaged of what’s called the “Christmas Season” – one day isn’t enough to eat all those mince pies and gingerbread houses and drink all that mulled wine! Why not extend Christmas so that it essentially lasts for two months (sometimes three if you’re lucky)!? Side note – you may want to brace yourselves for two months of Christmas-themed blog posts!
But, I feel the same about ANZAC biscuits. That might be an overstatement, but I definitely think that if you find a good thing in this world (and my golly, a pragmatic biscuit is one of the best things in this world, apart from God’s grace), you should make the most of it (so philosophical…I apologise).
So here is my favourite ANZAC biscuit recipe. It’s adapted from an old Good Weekend recipe. It’s a funny one, that I often alter, so feel free to muck around with the quantities if you like – the key to ANZAC biscuits is to make sure they look the part before baking. You want the mixture to be dry enough to not be sloppy, but moist enough that the biscuits will hold together without cracking or crumbling in your hand when you shape or flatten them. So give it a go and add more water or golden syrup if it seems too dry, or chuck in some more flour or oats if it seems too moist.
100g (1 cup) rolled oats
140g (1 cup) plain flour
200g (1 cup) golden caster sugar (or just regular caster sugar)
70g (1 cup) desiccated coconut
3 tbsp golden syrup
1 1/2 tsp bi carb soda
1 tbsp water (if needed)
- Melt butter in a small saucepan. When melted add the bi carb soda and stir until combined – it will fizz a little bit, but it’s meant to! Then add the golden syrup.
- Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Add the butter mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until well combined. Add more flour/oats or syrup/water at this point if necessary (see above).
- Preheat oven to 170C fan forced and line two or three large baking trays with baking paper – don’t use foil as the biscuits will probably stick!
- Shape the mixture into tablespoon sized balls and place them on the baking trays. You shouldn’t need to flatten them, but make sure you leave a lot of space between each biscuit and it tends to spread a bit. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden in colour – they will still be soft in the centre when perfectly cooked.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool on trays – they will harden on cooling.