Take a deep breath Bunters, you’re in for a treat. Today we bring you a recipe for Anzac biscuits. But not just any recipe. These are Royal Show, blue ribbon winning biscuits bought to you by Monique Bowley. She of the epic piping-bag potato tantrum on the current Great Australian Bake-Off promotion, soon to air on Channel 9 and by jingo – WE. CANNOT. WAIT. But until then, read and learn from one of the best in the business. If you want to know more about this glamazon (yes, really – 6 foot something with legs that go forever), then pop on over and check her fabulous roving retro lemonade caravan, the little van that could, here, and do yourself a favour and follow her hilarious twitter musings and instagram feed. Oh, and sit tight for The Great Australian Bake off, in your living room soon.
Is there anything more Australian than a cup of tea and a home baked biccy? Well, perhaps. I mean, you could be obese and sunburnt, standing with a flag draped around your shoulders, bum crack hanging out of too-tight shorts, yelling obscenities at the cricket with a tinny in one hand and a durrie in the other. But we’re talking romantic Australian here, petals. The kind of charming, country simplicity we should aspire to.
You won’t find a more Australian biscuit than an ANZAC. Sent by wives to soldiers abroad because they’d last the distance and not spoil easily, it was a little taste of home.
Today, ANZAC biscuits are found waning on the supermarket shelves, playing second fiddle to the Tims and the Tams of the world, sitting somewhere between your Milk Arrowroot and your Iced VoVo, which is where they shall stay. Because YOU, dear reader, are resourceful. And this ANZAC day, you are going make your own.
There are a few simple rules for a decent ANZAC biscuit. Firstly, don’t deviate from the recipe. Fancy adding a bit of citrus rind? Sure Martha Stewart, no one’s stopping you. Just don’t call it an ANZAC. Using Maple Syrup instead of Golden Syrup? Hello! Look at you fancypants- you just made Maple and Oat Biscuits. ANZAC Biscuits must be strictly adhered to. Golden syrup, oats, butter, bicarb, dessicated coconut, flour. That. Is. All.
You know the best thing about ANZACS too, is that they are easy peasy. There’s no fancy ingredients. No methods that will leave you scratching your head. Got a bowl and a wooden spoon? It’s just melt, mix and bake.
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup raw sugar
¾ cup dessicated coconut
1 cup plain flour, sifted
125 g butter, melted
2 tablespoons Golden Syrup
½ tsp bicarb soda
3 tablespoons boiling water
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees, no fan. (If your oven is fan forced, drop it down to 160 degrees)
Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Place the oats, coconut, flour and sugar in a bowl, stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Melt the butter and golden syrup in a saucepan over low heat. In a separate bowl, combine the bicarb and boiling water, then add this to the butter/syrup mixture. It will probably foam up and increase in size. That’s good. Pour this foaming mess into your dry mix and stir.
Once it’s all combined, roll into golfball sized balls, or, using a spoon, drop mixture onto trays, spacing them about 6cm apart.
Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown. Sometimes if your oven is a bit shit, like mine, you need to rotate the trays by 180 degrees halfway through baking so you get an even bake.
Cool on trays, or transfer to wire racks. Store in an old biscuit tin that you found in an op shop, or swiped from your grandma., They’ll last months. Try not to scoff them all within the day.
A few extra tips to ensure your perfect ANZAC:
Using home brand oats works better. (makes sense – those old soldiers wives were a frugal lot)
Using fresh golden syrup works a treat. If yours has been sitting in the cupboard for a couple of years, it will still do the job, but fresh is best
I use MacKenzies bicarb soda. Again, fizzy freshness.
Baking on aluminium/silver trays will ensure your biscuit colour is even, top to bottom. Dark trays absorb the heat and you will have dark bottoms to your biscuit. That’s fine, sunshine, but if you’re after a more perfect result that’s how you get it.
For a chewy biscuit, add a little more water so your mixture is wet.
For a snappy crunch, bake for longer, at a lower temp.
EDITED & ADAPTED FOR THERMOMIX USERS BY MISS BUNTING!
Using exactly the same ingredients and cooking times as stated above, simply:
– Add Butter and Golden Syrup to TM bowl, melt for 3 minutes at 100 degrees, speed 1.
– IN MC, add 1/2 tsp bicarb to 3 tbsp of boiling water, then pour into TM bowl and whizz for 10 seconds on speed 3.
– Add 1 cup of Rolled Oats, 1 cup of Raw Sugar, 1 cup of Plain Flour and 3/4 cup of desiccated coconut to TM bowl, mix together for 40 seconds on reverse, speed 2
Cooking times as above (160 degrees fan forced, 180 degrees otherwise for 15-18 minutes. Read the tips, they’re still relevant to TM users!