I’ve already told you of my love of Matthew Evans. This is another one of his recipes from Good Weekend. They are sensational. A luscious light texture and the spices add complexity. Next time I might even add a little lemon zest.
(Sorry, no pics, camera batteries are dead and I think the camera is still in the car and it’s freezing so there’s no way I’m going out there now. Just so you know.)
Matthew Evans, Good Weekend
- 125g butter, softened
- 2/3 cup caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 1/3 cups plain flour
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 125g whole, unblanched almonds
- 35-40 (about 50g) whole unblanched almonds, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 180C
- In a food processor blitz the almonds until they’re fine but still crumbly – you don’t want it as fine as commercial almond meal – and set aside
- Cream the butter and sugar together until pale*
- Add the egg
- Fold in the flour, spices, baking powder and salt
- Add the almonds
- Line two trays with baking paper and dot with about 1 tablespoon of mixture at regular intervals, leaving space for them to spread a little**
- Press an almond into the top of each one
- Bake for 8-10 minutes or until they start to tan up nicely (in my oven this took more like 12 minutes)
- Remove from the oven, cool well before storing.
* Because I’ve got a fancy pants processor with different sized bowls, I did the almonds in the small bowl then continued making the recipe using the processor in the bigger bowl
** Mine didn’t spread very much at all, but that could well be because I’d run out of baking powder and Mum’s was out of date…
So for the better part of the last 20 years I’ve been faithful to the Womens’ Weekly recipe for choc chip biscuits and they have done me proud. But an American friend of mine made some that just seemed better and she gave me the recipe. From what I can tell it is essentially the same recipe but in bigger quantities.
I made them and dotted a few Smarties on the top. And people, I might as well have invented choc chip biccies.
Choc Chip Biccies
- 1 cup butter
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 large eggs
- 21/2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups choc chips
- Smarties to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 180C and line baking trays with greaseproof paper
- Cream the butter and sugar
- Add the vanilla and the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition
- Add flour and baking powder
- Stir through choc chips
- Take heaped teaspoons of dough and place on baking trays, leaving a little distance between them as they’ll spread
- Press four Smarties into the dough
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until lightly browned then cool for a few minutes on the tray before moving to a wire rack.
This makes a LOT of biscuits. The friend the recipe came from used to roll the dough into two logs and freeze one for a later date. She’d also then refrigerate the other one before cutting rounds and baking. But when you feel like biccies, who has time for refrigeration.
Nigella attributes these to Elinor Klivans and her book Big Fat Cookies, so technically this might not be a Nigella recipe, but you know, she has it in her latest cookbook Nigella Express so I’m taking it as legit.
These are not so much biscuits as saucers. It makes 12 chocolate plates or 24 biscuits.
Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 125g chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa
- 150g flour
- 30g cocoa
- 1tsp bicarb
- 1/2tsp salt
- 125g butter
- 75g light brown sugar
- 50g sugar
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg, cold from the fridge
- 350g semi-sweet chocolate morsels or dark chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 170C
- Melt the chocolate in a double saucepan on the stovetop or in the microwave
- Mix the flour, cocoa, bicarb and salt together
- Cream the butter and sugar together
- Fold in the chocolate and then add the egg and vanilla
- Mix through the dry ingredients and then the choc chips
- Using an icecream scoopp, scoop out 12 equal-sized mounds on a lined baking sheet about 6cm apart. Do not flatten them
- Cook for 18 minutes and let cool for 4-5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
I used white chocolate chips as I didn’t have dark chocolate ones.
Oscar came home from school last week so excited. On his library day, he got two books – one on knights, the other a Donna Hay cookbook for kids titled “Cool Kids Cook“. And indeed they do.
Donna Hay Thumbprint Cookies
(but now referred to in our house as Oscar’s jammy thumbprints)
- 180g butter
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup SR flour
- 1 1/4 cup plain flour
- raspberry and apricot jams (or whatever you prefer)
- Preheat oven to 180C, grease a biscuit tray
- Cream the butter and sugar
- Add the egg
- Fold through the flour
- Roll dessert spoons of dough into a ball and flatten slightly
- Place on the tray then press your thumb into the middle to make a hole
- Spoon in a tsp of jam into each thumbprint. The boys seemed to like the Apricot ones better, go figure.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until the biccies are golden. (In our oven it was more like 15-17 minutes)
- Makes around 18.
I like the idea of making grown up versions of this with wholewheat flour and jams like a fig jam or something similar.
They’re quite large biscuits – big discs – and really really good.
I’d post a photo if I could be bothered. But, you know …