Monday, February 11, 2013

Flashback: Grannie's biscuits

There was something funny in the air yesterday.

From what felt like out of the blue I had a yearning to bake some biscuits that I used to make with my grandmother when I was a little girl. I made a tenuous link from the red of the cherries to the celebration of Chinese New Year; I had friends visiting and needed something to share and to thank them for coming to see me; and I had - for the millionth time - re-discovered the little book my grandmother gave me so that I could make her recipes even when she was far away.

Much later in the day, as i thought about this last point, I remembered it was the anniversary of my grandfather's death. That day was a Sunday too, and it tore my world apart like I never imagined it would.

So here's to memories; to family and friends of the past, present and future; to staying close, even when you're very, very far away.

Grannie's Biscuits

This is how big walnuts are. Honest.
I made a minimal tweak, because I forgot I needed chopped mixed nuts, so I threw a few walnuts and macadamias in the food processor. I also used bottled lemon juice. I'm sorry Grannie, I won't do it again. So here's the recipe as it was written down for 6 year old me.

8 oz margarine or butter
4 oz caster sugar
10 oz plain flour
Finely grated rind of one lemon (or a good squeeze of lemon juice
1 oz chopped glacé cherries (roughly 9 or 10)
1 oz chopped mixed nuts

Cream all together then form into balls the size of a walnut. 

As an aside, when making these I realised that I learnt the size of walnuts, not from actual walnuts but from the size i learnt to roll balls of biscuit dough when you're told to roll them the size of walnuts.

Exactly how Grannie did it - in case you were wondering
But on with this terribly complex recipe. 

Put onto baking trays - space out nicely, press each one out a little to flatten then dip fork into flour and put lines on each one - here's the tricky bit - "like you did with Grannie."

I can see where some of you might struggle with that step. Don't put too much pressure on yourselves, I'm the only person in all of eternity fully qualified to do it properly.

Bake for 15-20 mins or until nicely browned. 325°

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