14 October 2014

Anzac biscuits - a terrific emergency biscuit recipe

You know, I'm sure hubby wasn't planning on making biscuits today.  Not as far as I was aware, anyway.  This morning we went and got the bulk of the week's food shopping in, then came home and hubby put the shopping away while I had a shower. Then, I discovered that he was busily making biscuits - Anzac biscuits, which turned out to be the scrummiest, most naughty thing! SO many calories per biscuit, but so yummy with their coconut and oats.

Do I hear you asking "what is an Anzac biscuit and why is it called so"?  Both of which are very good questions.

Well I first tripped over Anzac biscuits in a supermarket (can't remember which one) which was stocking packets of them around about Remembrance Sunday time.  A percentage of the proceeds were going to injured servicemen, as I recall.  Well, being soldier's daughter, I bought a couple of packets for the charity point of view, hoping they'd be nice.  They were more than nice, they're a fabulous accompaniment to a cup of coffee, or chai tea, or even builders' tea.  They're the old fashioned HobNob, made before HobNobs were even a twinkle in their creator's eye.

As for why they are called "Anzac Biscuits", well Anzac biscuits have long been associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) which was established in World War I.  It has been claimed the biscuits were sent by wives to soldiers abroad because the ingredients do not spoil easily and the biscuits kept well during naval transportation. So you can see the Forces connection.

It must have been a wonderful moment to receive a parcel from home which contained a package of these wonderfully, munchy, crunchy biscuits.  A little bit of heaven in an awful lot of hell.

Now from a current perspective, the speed at which hubby brought the biscuits together and baked them - probably around half an hour at the most - makes them one of the most agreeable "spur of the moment" or "last minute, Mother's on her way" biscuits to make.  The end result is certainly worth more than the time they took to make!

So, if you fancy some baking or you're cooking with your kids, give them a history lesson while they are baking and make some Anzac biscuits.  Your next cup of tea will thank you.

ANZAC BISCUITS   (makes 20)

Ingredients :

85g porridge oats
85g desiccated coconut
100g plain flour
100g caster sugar
100g butter, plus extra butter for greasing
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

Method :

1.  Combine all the dry ingredients except the bicarbonate of soda together in a bowl.

2.  Melt the butter in a decent sized pan (it needs room to expand) over a low heat.

3.  Add the golden syrup to the butter.

4.  Put the bicarbonate of soda into a small cup, add the boiling water and mix.

5.  Remove the butter mixture from the heat and allow to cool for 30 secs or so.

6.  Pour in the bicarbonate of soda mixture to the butter and watch it froth!

7.  Quickly mix all the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients before you lose the froth and stir well until completely mixed.

8.  Make a flattened disc out of a spoonful of the mixture and place onto a lined baking sheet.  Make sure to leave at least 1" between each disc.

9.  Bake in a preheated oven at 180degC/350degF/Gas 4 for 8-10 minutes, watching them like a hawk to make sure they don't burn.

10.  Put each biscuit on a cooling rack until absolutely cold.

Calories per portion (1 biscuit) : 118 (wince) - however, they do keep well in an airtight tin!  (Reference : Calorie Counter).


  1. So glad you put in the background of Anzac's - me being a New Zealander! Definitely a staple here! Cheers from Carole's Chatter

    1. I love how some foods have a very definite history to them - and Anzac biscuits are one of those foods. It's a bit like the Bedfordshire Clanger - a pasty with meat and potato at one end and fruit at the other, to provide an entire meal in the one bake. If you don't explain why these things appeared, nobody truly understands what they're all about. :)

  2. These biscuits sound delicious! Do you know what the US equivalent ingredients would be? Would it be rolled oats, shredded sweetened coconut, flour, granulated sugar, butter, Karo syrup and baking soda? Thanks! I love your recipes!

  3. Hi Kristin, Chillibob here!
    With reference to substituting ingredients it would be fine to use rolled oats or porridge oats. The finished biscuits are quite sweet though so I'd use unsweetened coconut, either shredded or flaked. Karo or corn syrup should be fine too or you could use honey or even maple syrup for a slightly different angle. The only sticky (lol) point is the bicarbonate of soda. baking soda is not the same as bicarb and so I don't know what would happen there. You might need to consult google to find a suitable alternative.

    Other than that good luck and I hope you enjoy them!

  4. Thanks! I can't wait to try these!

  5. I love it, I've been looking (off and on, more off) for a recipe for these biscuits. As a Canuck, I'd heard about them, but everytime I'd think to look for the recipe, I couldn't find it. I think I'll be making them soon.


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