For once my day wasn’t jam packed with chores so I thought I would continue the theme of making biscuits I didn’t really like in the hope of improving them with a home-made variety. We have a concept of “emergency biscuits”. A jar on the dresser in the kitchen is kept stocked just in case Himself needs a quick snack while he’s working hard. It needed filling so I started thinking about my next challenge.
I was suddenly struck with the memory of Butter Osbornes that my late grandmother was very fond of. I’m not sure I ever ate one and had no idea what they looked like but I thought a search on the internet would yield results. However, I could find very little information on them. It seems that Huntley and Palmers who used to produce them, have discontinued them.
There was no recipe to be had anywhere so I settled for Rich Tea biscuits which I’ve always found to be rather bland. They are far from my favourite choice but I have to admit they are great for dunking in tea.
Even though to me they are an uninspiring biscuit, I discovered that they have quite a history. A bit of research told me that they are a plain, round biscuit, developed in Yorkshire in the 17th century. Originally called Tea Biscuits, they were designed as a light snack between meals for the Yorkshire upper-classes.
After that I was keen to find out if home-baked would improve the not-so-humble Rich Tea.
Makes approx 18 biscuits
- 2 tbls golden syrup (I used 1tbls golden syrup & 1 tbls maple syrup)
- 85g butter
- 225g self raising flour
- 1 egg
- Pinch of salt
- Heat oven to 180C.
- Melt the butter and syrup in a pan then add to the dry ingredients in a food processor.
- Mix until it resembles breadcrumbs then add the egg to form a soft dough.
- Roll out to about 3mm thick onto a floured surface and cut out the rounds with a cookie cutter.
- Place on a non-stick baking tray and prick with a fork.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown in colour.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly then move to a wire rack and cool completely.
- Enjoy by dunking in a cup of tea – preferably Lady Grey.
And the verdict? Overall – disappointing. A pale, crisp biscuit with not a lot of taste. I think they would have been better rolled out thinner and I also found that they didn’t stay crisp for long but started to soften after a very short time.