Anzac biscuits are as much a culinary institution as the pavlova In New Zealand and Australia, without the jostling over who made them first (we did!).
These humble cookies are delicious all year round (and with plenty of goodness my Granny used to say, what with all the coconut and rolled oats!). While named after Anzacs, the recipe for these delicious biscuits was first published in the late 1920s. During the First World War, sending food parcels was relatively rare, other than tinned goods such as boiled sweets and sardines. Soldiers biscuits that were sent were more basic and wouldn’t have contained butter, as it would have gone rancid, or pricier ingredients at the time such as coconut and golden syrup. Food parcels were more prevalent in the Second World War, but would have had limited perishable ingredients.
There are any number of Anzac biscuit recipes, but all now faithfully include golden syrup and oats. In honour of ANZAC day, here is GrownUps’ favourite version, with a couple of added goodies.
- 100g butter
- 3tbsp golden syrup
- 1/4 cup boiling water
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 100g flour
- 150g sugar
- 100g rolled oats
- 75g coconut
- 1/4 cup cranberries/chocolate chunks/crystallised ginger/pistachio nuts (optional)
- Coffee crystals, plum/raspberry powder, chocolate, to decorate (optional)
Preheat oven to 180C. Melt butter and golden syrup together. Dissolve baking soda in boiling water and add to the butter mixture. Sift flour and sugar together and mix in oats and coconut and optional extras if desired.
Place heaped teaspoons of mixture on a tray lined with baking paper and flatten slightly, leaving plenty of room for the mixture to spread. Bake 10-15 minutes until deep golden and flattened. Sprinkle with fruit powder, extra coconut, coffee crystals or spread with melted chocolate to serve.