Edmonds Cookbook ANZAC biscuits

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It is indeed a happy accident, that my arrival at ANZAC biscuits in the Edmonds Cook Book as I head forth in my self-imposed Edmonds Challenge has coincided so closely with ANZAC Day.

ANZAC Day always puts me in mind of Aud and Reg, my Granma and Grandad on my Dad’s side.  Along with many others, my grandparents were part of World War II. Grandad went away with the Royal Air Force, and Granma was a WAF.  The milk bottle in the picture above was once theirs, and I used it in a little homage to them.

Here’s a photo of Aud and Reg below; I think from my Grandad’s cryptic title (“four years ‘ard labour”) and the pile of paper in front of them, they are sitting in front of all of the letters they exchanged while Grandad was abroad.  He looks rather Don Draper, although that’s where the comparison ends…he was a most morally upstanding man and a teetotaller to boot.

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ANZAC biscuits enjoy a historical pedigree dating back to World War I, where their ancestor-biscuits of oats, golden syrup, sugar and four were sold at fetes and galas at home to raise money for the troops.  After Gallipoli the term ANZAC was born, and the ANZAC biscuit followed, first appearing in a cook book in 1921.

It is of course unthinkable that Edmonds, holding its bible-like status in the New Zealand baking canon, would not have a recipe for ANZAC biscuits, and indeed I, personally, would not use any other.  So without further ado, see below for Edmonds’ ANZAC biscuit recipe

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup desiccated coconut
  • 3/4 rolled oats
  • 50g butter
  • 1 T golden syrup
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 T boiling water

Heat the oven to180 degrees Celsius. Mix together the flour, sugar, coconut in a large-ish bowl.  Melt together the golden syrup and butter (I did this in a little dish in the microwave).  Dissolve the baking soda into the water and add it to the butter and syrup.  It will bubble and fizz in an awesome kind of way.

Mix the butter mixture with the dry ingredients and place tablespoonfuls on a cold, greased tray.  I must confess I used a cookie cutter to shape them; I’m sure this is not authentic, but I had some new cutters and I was looking for a chance to use them. Bake for 15 minutes or until they are golden and crispy.

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Antipasto, courtesy of Edmonds

Ladies and gentlemen, we have finally hit the International Dishes section of the Edmonds Cook Book.

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As I make my way alphabetically (and rather slowly, I do admit) through the Edmonds Cook Book, the A section to date has yielded a fair bit of baking and things involving almonds.  But now, we find ourselves at Antipasto, opening a rather ambitious International Dishes selection including foreign delicacies like nachos and cucumber salad.

I suspect in this day and age, many of us are familiar with antipasto and its role as the opening dish in an Italian meal.  In our little far-flung corner of the world, however, the inclusion of Antipasto, and indeed an International Dishes section at all, to the Edmonds was no doubt a bold leap into the unknown at the time.

This may explain why tasty cheese makes up the cheese selection in the ingredients list, when in other antipasto recipes we see rather more exotic cheeses such as aged Manchengo or Gruyere.  But tasty cheese is a firm favourite in our shaky isles and it is only appropriate that it features in the Edmonds take on antipasto.  And I don’t want to seem as if I am sneezing at tasty cheese.  There are very few snacks as lovely as a thick slice of tasty cheese on a cracker with a generous spoonful of my Mum’s tamarillo chutney.

So for an antipasto platter, Edmonds-style, you will need the following:

  • 425g can artichoke hearts
  • 1/2 cup black olives
  • 6 to 8 slices of smoked beef
  • 250g tasty cheese
  • cherry tomatoes
  • 6 to 8 slices of salami

 

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And the rest is pretty simple chaps.  After draining and rinsing the artichokes, all that one is required to do with the ingredients is ‘arrange decoratively on a plate.’  I will leave the arranging up to your imaginations.  This is how mine looked and it was most pleasing with a little tipple on a late Summer afternoon.  Enjoy.

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