World Palate Recipes – Australia and New Zealand
There is nothing more Australian or Kiwi than the Anzac biscuits (and the Pavlova!). Bite into these delicious, crunchy, chewy oatmeal biscuits with a hint of coconut and you will understand why the women of Australia /New Zealand made them historic. Yes, and they are still baked for charity every year.
Anzac biscuits are associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) established in World War I. ANZAC Day is celebrated on 25th April in both countries. Biscuits were baked and sent by wives of these soldiers, the ingredients chosen so that they would not spoil easily. The biscuits would keep flavour and freshness while being shipped overseas. During the World War 1, the aim of the Army (ANZAC corps)was to land at Gallipoli and capture Constantinople (now Istanbul). To date, a ceremony takes place at 10:15 am on 25th April, at the War Memorial in Australia and New Zealand.
After the ceremony, families place red poppies besides the Memorial’s Roll. Women still bake Anzac biscuits for charity and distribution on this special day. Here is my friend Debbie and family, from New Zealand sharing their photos. The medal and red poppies are traditionally worn in remembrance. Thanks Debbie!
Famous Anzac biscuits (lovingly called bikkies), can be made using a recipe from Edmond’s Cookery book.
Here is my revised recipe from Australian Woman’s weekly. I reduced the amount of desiccated coconut. I did not have golden syrup so I had to add few extra drops of water, else the oatmeal crumble was a bit dry.
Anzac bikkies – Australian /New Zealand cookies
1 1/2 cup rolled oats (flaky or smooth)
1 cup flour
3/4 cup desiccated coconut (if adding slivered almonds, reduce coconut as desired)
1 cup brown sugar
8 tbsp butter (prefer rich creamy variety)
2 tbsp golden syrup or honey (optional)
1 tbsp. baking soda
2 tbsp. boiling water (this is essential tip!)
Sift the dry ingredients together, lightly airing them while sifting. Add baking soda to boiling water in a cup, set aside. In a saucepan, melt the butter lightly, (add syrup or honey), gently add the water /soda mixture and see the bubbles rising. Turn off flame, keep stirring and the bubbles will soon settle. This mix will soften the dry oatmeal crumble..so be patient.
Heat oven to 190 degrees for 10 minutes.
Pour into the oatmeal crumble and blend gently in cake mixer or use wooden spoon if working by hand.
Tip!- As I had not used syrup – I found the mixture very dry, so I added few drops of boiling water.
Line butter paper on oven try or prepare with light grease and dust with flour. Take an ice cream scoop or wooden spoon, scoop out a ball of dough mixture and pat on a tray, leaving wide space between. Bake about 8 -10 small biscuits at one go ( or 5-6 large ones).
Bake for 10- 12 minutes, till edges turn golden brown. Centre remains bit soft. Cool on wire rack. A healthy snack is ready.
Is there a specially dedicated food towards war heroes you know ? Any baking tips on these biscuits you would like to share ?
For another New Zealand recipe click here.
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