ANZAC, The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps commemorate , along with most Australians and New Zealanders, Anzac Day on April 25th each year. This is a sober reminder of the horrors of war and the day marks the contribution made to peace by the members of ANZAC. The story goes that Anzac biscuits were made out of store cupboard ingredients and sent to the soldiers, by the wives and girlfriends of those ANZAC soldiers embedded in the trenches of Gallipoli in Turkey during the First World War. As a result, the Anzac biscuit holds a special place in the hearts of our southern hemisphere friends.
However, all is not as it might be as a small war has raged for decades between lovers of the Anzac biscuit. Should it be crunchy or chewy? They seem to be unable to agree. I am stepping in like a latter-day Boutros Boutros-Ghali to put an end to this conflict. My approach makes Anzacs that are both crunchy and crispy. So, here’s what you need to make a decent supply.
- 300g plain flour
- 200g jumbo oats
- 160g desiccated coconut
- 330g caster sugar
- 300g butter
- 8 tbsp golden syrup
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Side note on the ingredients: You can trick around with the ingredients to a degree. But, don’t mess with the bicarb. If you add too much, you might make a huge mess or you may end up with some not very attractive biscuits. If you use too little, you will have a flat, unappealing mess.
Unlike global politics, these are easy to do. Though, like global politics, timing is everything. Place all the dry ingredients bar the bicarbonate of soda in a big mixing bowl and combine.
Put the golden syrup and butter in a saucepan that is about twice the size you think you may need. Over a gentle heat, melt it and get a gentle boil going. When the butter mixture is boiling add the bicarbonate of soda and stir.
Keep stirring as the hot sticky mixture foams up inside the pot.
Then pour this into the dry mixture and stir as quickly as the claggy mess allows you, to combine the ingredients.
Turn this out into a lined baking tin and pat it down to get an even layer of biscuit mixture. This can be hard work as the mixture cools.
Pop it into a 160ºC fan oven and leave for about 20 minutes. When the mixture has risen a bit like a cake and turned a nice mid-brown, place the tray on a cooling rack and leave it to cool completely.
Slice the Anzacs into whatever size you think appropriate. I managed 32 biscuits from this lot. The end result is a chewy biscuit with a nice crunchy crust. There is a bit more crunch to the outer biscuits too.
These are a worthy little biscuit that go really well with a cup of coffee. The only problem I have is limiting myself to one, or even two. Happy Anzac Day.