New improved Anzac biscuits for Anzac Day, and it’s already the 25th April on the other side of the World. These oat and coconut based biscuits were originally sent to Australian and New Zealand forces serving in Gallipoli in the First World War and have a firm place in the Antipodean heart, and it’s easy to see why as they’re absolutely delicious.
I already have a really good Anzac cookie on my site, but I find these little oaty, fruity coconutty biscuits highly tempting and I’m always keen to develop new recipes.
This recipe was inspired by an Ottolenghi recipe in his cookbook ‘Sweet’ – as I’ve probably mentioned many times, I’m a huge Ottolenghi fan as I feel he can add flavour more than most chefs and so his cookbooks are both some of my most thumbed cookbooks. Whenever I see a naturally egg-free recipe in a cookbook I have to try it, and that is doubled when it’s an Ottolenghi recipe, so this recipe was an obvious place to get inspiration!
I have made Yotam’s recipe a fair few times and it’s really fabulous (of course!) but this is my version, partly inspired by the rather interesting little bags of coconut flakes from Urban Fruit. It can be really hard to find desiccated coconut that doesn’t have any nut and/or seed traces so when I saw these trace-free coconut flakes I had to buy them and put them into a recipe! (By the way if you are looking for nut/seed free desiccated coconut then the Centaur brand available from SousChef is good – I emailed them to check)
The benefit of these coconut flakes is that not only do they make an interesting free-from snack but since they’re toasted they add an interesting, subtle toasted coconut flavour to a bake. I think they’d also be rather nice in my granola recipe. If you can’t find the flakes, feel free to use desiccated coconut instead.
These Anzacs use golden syrup to make them plant-based, but you could easily use honey or maple syrup which would give a richer flavour. Often Anzac biscuits contain raisins but I’ve used currants which make a nice fruity change. But if you’re a dried fruit avoider, then feel free to lave them out, you could always replace them with some pumpkin or sunflower seeds instead. I think some dried mango or pineapple might also be an interest tropical twist for next time.
You want these biscuits to keep some texture so store loosely wrapped in foil rather than in a sealed container which will make them go a bit too soft.
New Improved Anzac Biscuits
- 40 g oats
- 18 g coconut flakes
- 50 g plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 25 g caster sugar
- 10 g soft brown sugar
- 20 g currants or other dried fruit
- Zest of ½ lemon
- 40 g dairy-free margarine
- 15 g golden syrup
- 10 ml dairy-free milk
- ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Centigrade. Line a cookie sheet with non-stick parchment
- In a large bowl mis together the oats, coconut flakes, flour, salt, sugars, dried fruit and lemon zest.
- Place the margarine, syrup and milk into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Immediately turn off the heat and stir in the bicarbonate of soda. You should have a foaming mixture.
- Pour into the dry ingredients and stir so everything is nicely combined.
- Form into balls the size of walnuts and place spaced apart on the baking sheet. Press down lightly.
- If you like, place a few extra oats and coconut flakes on top for decoration.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden. Cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet before moving to a wire rack.