On the reasons why I bake, in particular Chocolate Biscuits

Today’s biscuits are to say thank you. Also to say, hope you feel better. To separate people, of course. It doesn’t detract from the gesture at all because I did everything at the same time and made everyone the same thing, right?

Learning to bake was a conscious decision that I made because I think it’s a useful skill. I find baking pretty difficult, and I’m not that good at it. It’s not like normal cooking, where you can throw things in and it usually turns out alright because it can be “fixed”. With baking, once it’s gone in the oven, that’s that. You can only stare through the door willing the cake to rise, or the biscuits not to burn. Because if you open the door, bad things happen.

Ready to bake!

But, I realised that it’s a good skill to have. People seem to appreciate home made things 1000x more than anything you can get in the shops, even if they don’t taste as good. Also, it’s an easy way to say hello, thank you, please like me, hope you feel better, or basically any other  sort of relatively friendly sentiment. It’s also a relatively cheap present that people seem to find especially meaningful, because you did it yourself. Never mind that it actually took less time and effort to bake up a tub of cookies or a nice springy cake than go to the shopping centre and pick out a present.

If you leave them out in the humidity they soften

Hah. This is one post I hope too many people don’t read. Or it might not work anymore. See, I’m honest. Hrm.

I plan to reduce the sugar to a total of one cup next time…I felt these were still a bit sweet.

Chocolate Wafers

A Joy of Baking recipe, but I plan to make some changes next time and will update! To get as many biscuits as in the picture, I doubled the recipe.

1 cup / 130g flour
1/2 cup / 50g unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teasp baking soda
1/4 teasp salt
3 tablesp / 45g butter – at room remperature
3 tablesp / 45g margarine
2/3 cup / 140g brown sugar
1/2 cup / 100g white sugar
1 teasp vanilla extract
1 large egg white

Oven temperature: 180 degrees C

  1.  Beat butter and margarine until mixed well.
  2. Add sugar and vanilla extract, mix.
  3. Beat in egg white.
  4. Mix up the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Dump in the flour mixture  into the butter mixture and beat until just combined.
  6. If you are in a hot climate like me put it in the fridge for a bit to harden….
  7. Either:
    1. Make logs and wrap them in cling wrap, then put them in the fridge for a bit, or in the freezer for storage. When ready to cook, slice about 5mm thick and dump on a lined baking tray.
    2. Take a spoon and plop little biscuitlets on to a lined baking tray.  Try to make them approximately the same size, and flatten the tops a bit.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes, remove and cool. The tops should have puffed up and cracked a little. They harden as they cool.

Note on humidity: these don’ t do too well if you leave them out in the tropical heat, the humidity turns them into brownie-type cookies. Still good, but I like mine a bit crunchy.


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