I don't know about you, but honey biscuits are one of those things that instantly remind me of my Mum. My Mum was always baking when I was a kid; we always had something homemade in the biscuit barrel or cake tin - weren't we lucky! Honey Biscuits are the type of 'basic' biscuit that can be whipped up in ten minutes and out of the oven within 30 so they were often a go to recipe in my house and a frequent treat in my school lunchbox. This is totally my kind of baking. Nothing fancy about it, no bells and whistles. Just simple, uncomplicated and unpretentious home style cooking (and completely irresistible)!
There are several reasons why these biscuits are so great. Firstly, they can be made with ingredients that you most likely have in your pantry right this second. They don't require any technical skills and you don't have to cut them into shapes, just roll into balls, so they are easy for kids to make too. And finally, they only have a short cooking time so you'll have yummy, chewy cookies ready for eating within no time!
I went out for a trip to the Foreshore Markets in Port Macquarie yesterday and stumbled upon a little stall selling local Honey. The owner offered me a sample of their Ginger Honey and it just about knocked my socks off (in a good way)! The honey had a subtle spiciness to it and a slight citrus edge due to the addition of zest from lemons grown on their farm. I had to get a jar to take home and instantly decided I'd make a batch of Honey Biscuits but put my own twist on them by adding the Ginger Honey and a little bit of extra ginger!
I was conscious of not using too much sugar so I used half caster sugar and half Whole Earth Sweetener Baking Blend. This is a Raw Sugar and Organic Stevia Leaf Extract blend and claims to have 50% less calories than normal sugar. Stevia is 200 x as sweet as sugar so you don't need a lot of it.
I was worried about whether the Baking Blend would go alright with the creaming part of the recipe as the Raw Sugar grains are a lot larger than the granules of Caster Sugar. In fact to my surprise it creamed really nicely! There were some grains remaining at the end of the creaming process but they dissolved in the baking process. Just make sure you cream it really well for about 5 - 8 minutes to ensure you get it as smooth as possible. A tip to check whether creaming is successful is simply to pick up a tiny bit and rub it between your thumb and index finger and feel the consistency. It should be as smooth as possible.
The Ginger Honey made my biscuits fragrant and gave them a punchy little edge. In a way the ginger helps to balance out the sweetness of the biscuits, rounding them off nicely. If you can't find Ginger Honey, just add an extra teaspoon of ground ginger.
Honey & Ginger Biscuits
Yield: approximately 15 biscuits
120g butter, cut into cubes and softened (6 tablespoons)
½ cup caster sugar (or healthy sugar substitute)
1 x egg
1 tablespoon of ginger honey
1 ¾ cups Self Raising Flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch of salt
1. Preheat oven to 180°C and line 3-4 biscuit trays with baking paper.
2 Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl using electric beaters
3. Add egg and honey, mix well
4. Sift in the flour, salt and ginger.
5. Roll into balls, place on lined trays (leave space for them to spread) and mark with a fork
6. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges