Festive Gift Ideas: Cardamom Biscuits

These are a bit like gingerbread, but the cardamom really lifts them and gives an almost lemony flavour that stops them being too heavy and cloying. Depending on whether you cut them into slices or roll them into balls you’ll either get a thin, crisp biscuit or a puffier, more cakey cookie. Both types are delicious though.

Cardamom Biscuits

200g plain flour
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp mixed spice
seeds from 4 cardamom pods
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
100g butter
100g sugar
2 tbsp honey

1) Sieve the flour, ginger, mixed spice, cardamom and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Cut the butter into small chunks and add to the dry ingredients, rubbing the butter into the flour as you would when making crumble, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre.

2) Put the sugar and honey into a pan and heat gently until melted – it takes quite a while for the sugar to stop feeling grainy, so be careful not to burn it! You may need to keep stirring quite a bit to stop it from catching.

3) Working quickly, pour the syrup into the flour mixture and stir like mad to combine it. Once it is cool enough to handle, shape it into a roll, wrap in clingfilm and put in the fridge for half an hour or so to chill. While you’re waiting, preheat the oven to 180c/350f/Gas Mark 4.

4) When you take the biscuit dough out of the fridge, it might be firm enough to cut into slices. If it is, then cut the slice about ¼ cm thick and lay out on a greased baking tray. If the dough is too crumbly for this then don’t panic – you can form it into walnut sized balls, flatten them slightly and put on the baking tray.

5) Bake for around 15 minutes – they’re ready when the edges brown slightly but the middles may still be a bit soft.

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