Australian Desserts: Anzac Biscuits

  April 11, 2022   Read time 1 min
Australian Desserts: Anzac Biscuits
The crunchiness of Anzac Biscuits goes back to the roots of when they were invented – by soldiers’ wives who needed a biscuit recipe that would stay fresh for the months that it would take to reach soldiers overseas back in the early 1900’s.

The warm sweetness from the golden syrup combined with the wholesome goodness of oats and coconut is a flavour that is unique to this crunchy Australian biscuit! Australia’s favourite biscuit! We love them for their buttery caramel flavour, how crunchy they are, that it’s a forgiving recipe and the history – this is a biscuit that Aussies make to commemorate ANZAC Day.

“ANZAC” stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. And ANZAC Day – 25 April 1915 – is Australia’s most important national occasion each year, marking the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War during which we suffered heavy casualties.

It is said that the wives of soldiers came up with the original Anzac Biscuits using ingredients such that the biscuits stayed fresh for the weeks it took to reach the soldiers overseas. I’m told that the original Anzac biscuits were as hard as a rock, so hard in fact that some soldiers would grind them up and use them as porridge.

The only ingredient that might not be familiar to those outside of Australia and the UK is golden syrup. It’s an amber coloured syrup with the consistency of honey, and it has a toffee flavour. It has a bit of a harsh edge to the flavour so I only use it for baking, though some people use it in place of maple syrup for things like pancakes.

Best substitute for golden syrup is a combination of light molasses or treacle, plus honey. I use 1 part molasses or treacle, and 3 parts honey – the flavour is nearly identical, and the colour is very similar (a bit darker).

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