We aren’t really biscuit eaters here at food to glow. Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t averse to them. A Hobnob biscuit and a cup of tea is a simple pleasure that I wouldn’t say no to, if offered (hint, hint). Let’s just say we don’t have a biscuit barrel full of the things. Or indeed usually any packets of them lurking in cupboards. Mainly this is because none of us has a big sweet-tooth but also because most bought biscuits are full of things we could all do well with avoiding – trans-fats, bleached flours, multiple incarnations of sugar (including the recently-notorious-but-now-just-another-sugar high fructose corn syrup), too much salt. And then there are the so-called ‘flavourings.’ We are not saints – I would happily arm wrestle you for a bag of salt and pepper Popchips – but biscuits just aren’t our thing. Usually.But, of all the baking projects one can embark upon, biscuit making is the most fun. And usually the quickest too. When you make your own, not only do you know what’s in them, you also get the pleasure of making them, and sharing your oven-baked creations. If you feel so inclined. I know that cupcakes are still all the rage – and the black bottom ones from Cuckoo’s Bakery are divine – but there is something about the simplicity of creaming together a bit of fat and sugar, adding an egg, some decent flour, maybe some oats, and then popping in your (real) flavours – spices, cocoa, chocolate, seeds, dried fruit – whatever; whacking the shaped dough into the oven, and 15 minutes later (not an hour, like for a cake), et voilà, biscuits. The only difficult bit is waiting for the darn things to cool. Same with bread. Gotta respect the cooling. These biscuits need this little rest to get their characteristic snap. But I promise it is worth the half hour or so of agonised staring at the biscuits, willing them to cool and crisp up. Have a glass of coldest organic milk – or cup of hot tea – on standby.
There are loads of ginger-flecked and specked biscuits on the Internet and in cookbooks, but I hope you like these. Triple the ginger, triple the fun! But please don’t take this blog post as an endorsement of biscuits and sweet treats: whatever the sugar, whatever the flour, whatever the fat, moderation is key. If you want to eat more, move more!
PS While trawling around reading about the nutrient profile of spelt flour I found a link to Heidi Swanson’s Triple Ginger Cookies. They look very similar to these, but with a different method and some different measurements. Although I was not influenced by her cookies (I was making these before I even knew what a blog was!), I feel that I must give her a link, and give you the option. Hers look very gingery!
Soon I will be posting a ‘raw’ ‘power bar’ type sweet – smoodged-up nuts, dried fruit and spices. Look out for this no-added sugar/fat, grain-free, vegan treat soon. But today is baking day at food to glow. Enjoy!
I have been neglecting to do some invaluable linking up but today I hope that Mark of Javelin Warrior’s Cookin’ W/ Luv will accept this for his Made With Love Mondays roundup. I don’t know if I have ever sent him anything sweet!
This week in 2011: Fragrant Tofu Thai Green Curry (dodgy photos but really tasty!)
This Week in 2012: Steam-fried Egg with Samphire and Smoked Tofu
Miss R’s Track of the Week: Frank Ocean’s ‘Sweet Life’ (it has one mild swear word)
Super-easy, ultra-snappy ginger biscuits – or cookies if you prefer – with wholesome and protein-rich cashews to make these treats last longer in your belly. Two will do. These are a perfect bake to give someone going through chemotherapy, or who just needs a little TLC.
Raw, large-grain sugar OR the sugar that drops off the crystallised ginger, to decorate – optional
Preheat your oven to 170C/330F and line two baking trays with baking parchment (non-stick) or Silpat.
Either by hand or with electric beaters, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy; beat in the egg with 1 tbsp of flour (this keeps the mixture from curdling).
Sift or dry-whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and ground ginger together and fold into the wet mixture; stir in the remaining ingredients until you get a soft, but rather stiff, dough.
Pinch away pieces of dough that weigh about 30 grams – or look the size of a shell-on walnut. I am a weirdo so I weigh each piece! Roll each piece into a ball as you go, and place about 5 cm (2″) apart on the lined trays; flatten slightly with the back of a wet fork. You should get up to 40 biscuits in a batch. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until just done and uniformly light brown. Leave on the tray for a couple of minutes before transferring the biscuits onto a baking rack to cool and crisp up.