These last 3 cookie recipes round out my Christmas Baking…. Gifted to me by a Bestie, a Big Sister and one of my son’s school homework project; they really remind me of Christmas’s past, and people I love…
My Christmas recipe book is hand written, recipes copied from other places, with notes, amendments, improvements – and reminders…. A bit tatty around the edges now, and more than one chocolate stain amongst the pages. It covers all manner of kitchen things Christmas.. But hopefully turning into a bit of an Heirloom….
To spoon out the chocolate chip cookies or the Anzac biscuits, you can use 2 teaspoons – one to scoop and then the other to scrape off the mixture onto the lined baking tray. A while ago I invested in a Cookie Scoop – its like a small ice cream scoop. Not only is it easier to use, you get uniformly sized cookies.
The first recipe is from my dear friend Max, who arrived in Nelson just a short time earlier than me, and as 2 “imports” we became firm friends, sharing laughs, briefly a small business and a love of a shared table. And although we no longer live close to each other, every meeting is like putting on a pair of comfy slippers – albeit very Chic ones on her side of the conversation… lol
Max’s Chocolate Chip Biscuits
6oz room temp Butter (170gm)
1 C Sugar
1 ½ C Flour
1 C Chocolate chips – I like using the large ones, sort of M&M sized
1 t Baking Powder
1 t Vanilla Extract
Cream the butter and once pale and fluffy, add the sugar and vanilla extract and continue to beat until very airy. Sift in the flour and baking powder and gently fold in with the chocolate chips. You don’t want to knock out the air, or over work the mixture – or a tough cookie will ensue.
Scoop or spoon the mixture onto a lined baking tray. Gently flatten and bake 10-12mins @ 180C. These cookies don’t spread very much and are ready when starting to brown around the edges. This amount makes approx. 30 cookies.
As a variation you can use any type of chocolate – white, dairy milk or dark; or a combination of all of them.
Its also nice to add ½ a Cup of roughly chopped Macadamia nuts to the mix.
These are VERY moreish, so I normally double the recipe to make sure there is more than enough to go around.
These next biscuits are my daughter’s all-time favourite biscuit. My sister made a batch a few Christmas’s ago, and since then they are simply known as Auntie Helen’s biscuits…
These are the biscuits to go to town on. Use all those cookie cutters and ice and decorate to your heart’s desire. They are good keepers and can be frozen iced or un-iced.
Auntie Helen’s Gingerbread Biscuits
½ C Sugar
1 t Baking Powder
1T ground ginger
1 egg beaten with a fork to break it up
¼ C golden Syrup
Sift the flour, baking powder and ginger together. Add the sugar and then rub in the butter. Or you can whiz it together in a food processor. Gently warm the golden syrup and mix into the egg. Add to the dry ingredients and mix until you have a dough.
Roll out to about ½ cm thick and cut into shapes. Bake @ 190C for10-15 mins. Depending on how big you make them, you should get around 30 from a batch of dough.
Once cooled ice with the icing below and decorate with either sprinkles or sugar balls; or you can pipe them with royal icing.
Hot Water Icing
125 gm Icing Sugar
15 ml Hot Water
Mix together, you may need to add a bit more water to get the consistency you want. You want it spreadable, but not too oozy – you don’t want it to run off the biscuits. Colour and use as required. This icing dries to a very nice sheen
1 egg white
250gm Icing sugar
Few drops of lemon juice
Using an electric mixer, whip the egg whites until soft peak form. Add the icing sugar and beat until thick. Add the lemon juice – this adds to the flavour, but also stops the icing setting rock hard. Colour and place in a piping bag and use to decorate your biscuits. You can also use it to “glue” other decorations to the biscuits.
My last biscuit is a play on an Anzac biscuit. My son once had a school project where he had to update the humble Anzac biscuit. This was the biscuit baked by the wives and mothers in New Zealand and Australia to send to their boys fighting in WW1 far far away. Oats, coconut and golden syrup, I think they came about as a biscuit that would travel well and keep well. Synonymous with the annual commemoration of the ill-fated ANZAC attack against Turkish troops at Gallipoli in WW1, it is closely related to the English Flap-jack biscuit.
He added some seeds, some pistachio nuts and dried cranberries (aka Craisins) – and the Christmas Anzac Biscuit was born! The red Cranberries and green Pistachios give them a festive look, and they taste delicious!
Patrick’s Christmas Anzac Biscuits
1 C shredded Coconut (you use desiccated coconut, but I love the extra texture of the shredded type)
1 C Rolled oats (not the quick cook ones, just plain old oats)
2 T pumpkin seeds
2 T Sunflower Seeds
¼ C Craisins
2 T roughly chopped Pistachios
1 T Golden Syrup
½ t Baking Soda
2 T boiling water
Mix flour, sugar, oats and coconut in a large bowl. Add the craisins, seeds and pistachios and mix well. Melt the butter and golden syrup together and heat through – in a larger saucepan than you think you need. Place the boiling water in a jug and add the Baking Soda, mix well – it will froth a bit. Add to the butter mixture and it will froth a lot… Stir into the dry ingredients and mix through.
Spoon/scoop onto a lined baking tray. Slightly flatten and bake 15 mins @ 165C. These biscuits will spread so space them out on the baking tray. Because of the high butter and sugar content this biscuits can burn easily, so watch them carefully for the last couple of minutes.
Delicious and crunchy, these are a favourite any time of the year..
So, there you have it! Take these biscuits and the ones I shared last time –
And you have biscuits for giving and biscuits for eating. Bagged or boxed, tied with a ribbon they make a great thank you or Christmas present.