Sweet and oat-y and thought to be a welcome inclusion in care packages sent to loved ones fighting in a long-ago war so far from home, Anzac biscuits are an Australian tradition that take their name from those first brave ANZAC soldiers who landed on a far away beach at Gallipoli in Turkey, on April 25th, 1915. On that April date each year, our nation solemnly remembers those long-ago soldiers and all those who have come after them.
Those original Anzac biscuits had a long way to travel to reach loved ones on faraway shores. While traditionally made with rolled oats and golden syrup, without eggs and with lots of sugar, there are many twists now on the original recipe that began appearing in recipe books from the 1920s. Traditional or with a twist? Chewy or crunchy? However you like them best, they are a biscuit with ties to our nation's history.
ANZAC biscuits with a ginger twist!
I discovered this version, for Nourishing Anzac Biscuits, over at Georgia Harding's blog, Well Nourished, while looking for a healthier version that had far less refined sugar. In my much-loved, old and splattered copy of the Day-to-Day Cookery Book by I.M. Downes, the Anzac Biscuit recipe calls for a whopping 3/4cup of sugar. While Georgia's recipe incorporates ground, mixed seeds, I have tweaked the recipe to make these biscuits without them. Here's how I made them:
Honey & Ginger Anzac Biscuits
60g raw honey
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
1/2cup wholemeal spelt flour
1 cup rolled oats
1/2cup dessicated coconut
1/4cup of coconut or brown sugar (optional)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger powder
1. Preheat oven to 170C.
2. In large bowl, combine all dry ingredients, except bicarb soda.
3. Melt butter with honey in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Remove from heat as
soon as butter has melted.
4. Add bicarb soda and stir in very gently as mixture becomes frothy.
5. Pour frothy butter mixture into dry ingredients and mix well.
6. Roll tablespoons of mixture into balls with wet hands (as mixture is somewhat sticky)
and place on lined baking trays. *Leave room between each biscuit to spread as it bakes.*
Flatten each biscuit ball slightly with a fork.
7. Bake until golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool considerably on trays before
transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.
8. Store in an air-tight container.
Try not to munch on too many of these before Anzac Day on April 25th otherwise you'll find yourself up early baking an extra batch!