Home made Bourbon biscuits

I am continuing in my quest to make traditional biscuits and focusing on the ones I like least to see if home-made can improve them.  This time I decided to tackle the humble Bourbon biscuit.  Next to custard creams, these are my second least favourite.  I discovered that these chocolate and cream creations were the invetion of Peek Freans back in 1910 and traditionally made of two oblongs sandwiched together with a chocolate filling.

Bourbons filled
Bourbons filled

Rather than stick with tradition and anyway I don’t have an oblong cookie cutter, I decided on a pretty flower shape.  Mine certainly looked good and although not wildly exciting, they were certainly better than the shop bought variety.

The one niggle I am coming across with biscuits in general is that they tend to go soft very quickly, even though I store them in an airtight tin.  Not sure what the solution is to that problem.

And now bourbons

  • Difficulty: medium
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Makes approx 10 complete biscuits

  • 50g butter
  • 50g soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbls golden syrup
  • 110g plain flour
  • 15g cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tbls Demerara sugar (ground) for decoration
  • 50g plain chocolate
  • 100g icing sugar
  • 2 tbls strong black coffee
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 160°C.
  2. Sift together flour, bicarb and cocoa powder.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy and beat in syrup.
  4. Add the flour and mix until a soft dough is formed.
  5. Turn out onto cling film and leave in the fridge for an hour.
  6. Lightly flour the worktop and roll out the dough to 1/2 cm thickness.
  7. Using a cookie cutter of choice cut out an equal number of shapes and place on a greased baking sheet.
  8. With a fork, pierce the surface of the biscuits several times and then sprinkle the ground Demerara sugar over half of the shapes.
  9. Bake for approx 15-20 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven and leave on the baking sheet for 10 minutes to harden up then move to a wire rack to cool completely.
  11. For the filling, melt the chocolate over a bowl of hot water, then beat with the icing sugar and vanilla, adding the coffee gradually (you don’t want it too runny) until you have a smooth paste.
  12. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag and with the biscuits centre side up, pipe onto half of them.
  13. Sandwich biscuits together in pairs with the sugar side on top.

Pretty Bourbons
Pretty Bourbons