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Published May 4th 2013
Treacle and oats in a snappy biscuit
Traditional ANZAC Biscuits
Soldiers' treats = our ANZAC biscuits. When our men went off to WWI, their loved ones back home worried that they wouldn't be getting enough nutrition from the rations they were living on. They put their heads together and searched for something they could send that would not need refrigeration and would remain edible during the long journey to faraway places.
Originally called Soldier's Biscuits, they consisted of Scottish rolled oats, sugar, flour, coconut and syrup or treacle mixed with bicarbonate of soda and boiling water. Due to the scarcity of eggs during the war, treacle was used as the binding agent.
Remember these tins?
As the war continued, many church organisations and women's groups made the biscuits as fundraising items, and today many RSL Clubs do likewise, using the proceeds to care for our veteran soldiers. ANZAC biscuits are consumed worldwide today, with Canadian troops receiving them every Christmas.
To ensure that the biscuits remained crisp, they were always packed in air-tight tins, some of which became collectors' items and can be found at treasure markets and swap meet stalls around the country.
Recipe for traditional biscuits:
1 cup rolled oats 1 cup brown sugar 1 cup plain flour 1/2 cup desiccated coconut 2 tablespoons golden strup/treacle
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
Sift flour and stir in oats, coconut and sugar. Melt butter with syrup and water and add to flour mixture, stirring as you go. On a greased baking tray, place rounded teaspoons (or dollops) of mixture about five centimetres apart and bake for 20 minutes at 150C or until firm. Cool on a wire rack.
Aussie Mess- Break up ANZAC biscuits and add to whipped cream, strawberries and mango. Stir.
Aromatic ANZACS - To make the biscuits spicy, add pinch of nutmeg and cinnamon to the mixture.
Cake Patriotic: Use crushed biscuits, wattle seed and macadamia nuts to form the crust of your cheesecake.
Australia "Fare" Cookies: - Add chocolate chips to recipe.
Citrus Soldiers Biscuits: - A dash of lemon juice and honey is added to the mixture and lemon zest is sprinkled on the top before baking.
Gallipoli Pie:- Crushed biscuits are mixed with melted butter and pressed into a cake tin. Cool for two hours, then top with whipped cream, banana slices, caramel topping and chocolate flakes (a sort of biscuit "with the lot").
ANZ-ing Biccies: -Add pinch of ginger and red chilli flakes to the mix for a really hot biscuit.