December 2, 2006

A touch of Australian History.....with every delicious crunch

The ANZAC cookie...... commonly made in abundance by patriotic citizens during Australia's annual Anzac Day on the 25th of April; but also a common favourite of cookie lovers (eg. Me!!) year round.What does ANZAC mean?
Australia and New Zealand commemorate the ANZAC Day public holiday on April 25 every year to honour the bravery and sacrifice of the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC), and of all those who served their country.
The ANZAC tradition began in World War I with a landing on 25 April, 1915 near Gallipoli on the Turkish Aegean coast. Because of a navigational error, the ANZACs came ashore about a mile north of the intended landing point. Instead of facing the expected beach and gentle slope they found themselves at the bottom of steep cliffs, offering the few Turkish defenders an ideal defensive position. Establishing a foothold, the Anzacs found an advance to be impossible. After eight months of stalemate the Allies withdrew, leaving 10,000 dead amongst the ANZACs and over 33,000 British dead.

Although Australia's official national day is in fact "Australia Day", many Australians have now come to regard ANZAC Day as the true national day of the country. Despite federation being proclaimed in Australia in 1901, many argue the "national identity" of Australia was largely
forged during the violent conflict of World War 1, and the most iconic event in the war for most Australians was the landing at Gallipoli.

Marches by veterans from all past wars and current serving members of the
Australian Defence Force are held in capital cities and towns nationwide. The ANZAC Day parade from each state capital is televised live with commentary. These events are followed generally by social gatherings of veterans, hosted either in a pub or in an RSL Club, often including a traditional Australian gambling game called "two-up", which was an extremely popular pastime with ANZAC soldiers. The importance of this tradition is demonstrated by the fact that though most Australian states have laws forbidding gambling outside of designated licensed venues, on Anzac Day it is legal to play "two-up".
My first encounter with an Anzac cookie was in 2004. It came in a dodgy little plastic wrapper and was hard as a rock! I took a bite...broke a tooth, replaced cookie in wrapper...and never again looked at an Anzac cookie. *laughs*

Just recently...pretty little Amanda; who has been an avid fan of my cookies and baking, convinced me to give the ANzac cookie another go. A workmate of hers had generously shared with her a family secret, and she was kind enough to let me in on the recipe! I've tried baking Anzac cookies before...but not like these....i was completely blown away~ they are absolutely divine; far superior by comparison; to the "broken tooth" and "out-of-the-jar"versions of the Anzac cookie. They didn't look like much at the beginning..and I was almost dissapointed even before I took them out of the oven...but *sigh* I was so very mistaken, after the first 5 minutes of baking my first batch, an intoxicating cookie scent lingered through my kitchen, and completely changed my thoughts about the recipe. The cookies had Chewy centers....dark golden crusted crisp corners and the best ever oatmeal cookie texture I've ever had.... I'd give this cookie a 6 out of 5 *wink* I shan't talk about the health properties of this cookie...*sly's away* be honest; the dough gets a little greasy and sugar proportions are a tad bit higher than I'm used to...but DANg it~ the cookie is so~ worth that little extra time at gym! Try it...It'll transform your many fowl perceptions of the Anzac cookie.
1 cup self-raising flour
1 cup sugar
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup rough desiccated coconut (dried)
125g butter
2 tbs golden syrup
1tsp baking soda
2 tbs water
Combine flour, oats, sugar and coconut in a bowl. set aside. in a saucepan, add butter, golden syrup, water and baking soda. stir until smooth. add wet to dry and mix. roll into balls and place on a lined or well-greased baking tray. place into a moderate oven (180-190 degrees celcius0 for 8-12 minutes. let biscuits sit until they have set.(I used a microwavable bowl instead of the saucepan...worked out fine ;)
*the cookie dough can get a little tricky and messy in your hands...I used a melon baller to scoop portions out..but an ice cream scoop should be fine too. Remember to place them WELL apart as they might end up with a HUGE-ENORMOUS cookie (like-so) if you don't, but then again...could that really be a bad thing *cheeky grin*


Anonymous said...

Oh su-yin,
Really tempting la this recipe but i just wonder rite? the coconut if wat type? is it the

grated one or
grated but fried till dried(brown colour) or
fresh coconut milk? (santan)

Anonymous said...

What's not to love about an anzac cookie? I miss Australia...

Anonymous said...

Wow! Those cookies look really good! I'm just starting to learn to bake cookies and wanted to try your recipe. Can you let me know what the coconut ingredient is in this recipe? Is it dessicated coconut or fresh grated coconut? Thanks so much.

Anonymous said...

just wondering,what kind of sugar do you use in your cookies?

Anonymous said...

Looks great and delicious! But what was the family secret?? Or is it so secret you can't say?

na said...

Oh your an angel Su-Yin! I purchased a packet of RSL Anzac cookies for my blogger by mail package to send to my recipient in the USA (in fear that my homemade version may not last the duration of postage over the Xmas period).

I LOVED this entry, and as much as I adore your new found love for Korean food, I also look forward to many more "Aussie" inspired dishes emerging from your kitchen! <3

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

Sorry bout the mess ups with the recipe in the beginning...I fixed the coconut one up already ;)...the sugar is just regular castor sugar. ANd the family secret was the recipe~ haha...the secret has been revealed for everyone to have a go.

Brilyn: I'm glad you had pleasant experiences wiht the Anzac cookie...haha I didnt have a good first impression.

Real nice to head from you Artizan Flair...havn't heard much from you lately ;)

Anonymous said...

Hi Su-yin,
Tried your recipe substituting the castor sugar with raw sugar - still tasted great. Loved how they were chewy in the centres. Thanks for your recipe!

Anonymous said...

looks delicious.are you supposed to use self raising flour in cookies though?

Anonymous said...

Hi! I have a question! DO i really have to use self raising flour? can it be a normal one? cause I live in Germany so I dont know if they have smt like that. Thanks again & i love ur blogg

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

hey anonymous German reader :)
I did some google-ing on self raising flour in is apparently quite hard to source..anyway...Plain flour wont exactly work wiht this recipe. It would be a good idea to get some "Zelfrijzend bakmeel" :P
Or maybe make self raising flour on your own.
For 1 cup self-rising flour use:

* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
* a pinch of salt.

Anonymous said...

Hi Su -Yin

I hosted an Australian girl last X-mas she gave me an Australian recipe - Anzac cookies - with plain flour it works fine. But next time I bake Anzac cookies I'l try the homemade selfrising flour you suggest as we can't get it in Denmark where I live.