SomethingToDo2

If there’s one way to celebrate the diggers, it’s with rolled oats and golden syrup and a cuppa after the dawn service. Not that my mum has ever limited her Anzac bikkies from being cooked solely on Anzac Day, but it’s probably un-Australian to not make them.

These biscuits are notorious for making it from Aussie kitchens in Wagga Wagga, across the oceans to the trenches in Europe, which means it is kind of hard to muck them up and they last forever. And they are so simple to make that even I can’t stuff them up, which I proved by whipping up a delicious (although slightly square because they bled into each other) batch last night.

I had imagined that my mother had a recipe, handwritten on a scrap of paper, passed down through generations, perhaps from my dad’s side since he had a great great uncle that was killed in Gallipoli. Not quite. She uses the Commonsense Cookery Book that she got given as a wedding present. So far the cookbook has lasted more than a decade longer than the marriage and the Anzac bikkies page is well-loved.

cookingpage

So let me pilfer that completely for you:

Ingredients:

1 cup of rolled oats
1 cup plain flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 desiccated coconut
2 tablespoons golden syrup
1/2 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon of bicarb soda
1 tablespoon boiling water
Pinch salt

Method:

  1. Mix oats, flour, sugar and coconut together.
  2. Melt syrup and butter together.
  3. Mix soda with boiling water and add to butter and syrup.
  4. Add to dry ingredients.
  5. Place tablespoons of mixture on a greased tray.
  6. Bake in slow oven, 150-160°C, for 20 mins.

Some tips from my mum:

  • Some people like them big, oily and buttery. This recipe is not exactly made for this, but if you do want that extra gooeyness, just add more butter and golden syrup (but they will spread out more over the tray while cooking).
  • If you want them crunchy and crispy, leave them on the tray to dry out. If you take them off earlier, they will have a soggy bottom.
  • When you add the bicarb soda to the melted butter and golden syrup, it froths up in bubbles. There is no warning in the recipe about it, so you have to have your dry ingredients placed close nearby so you can easily mix them together.
  • Use brown sugar, not white. It tastes better.

These are easy peasy to make, you’ve probably got all the ingredients in your cupboard and they give a nice, chewy texture. Anzac biscuits are so holy that the Department of Veterans’ Affairs controls which recipes are authentic and who can legally call them Anzac bikkies. This recipe follows it, so relax, they’re as Aussie as a public holiday.

Peter Fray

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