Today Australia and New Zealand celebrates ANZAC Day. A national day of remembrance. Honouring the bravery of all the men and women who have served their country through war. Recognising how their selfless sacrifices allow us to enjoy the lives we lead today.
The ANZAC tradition of courage, determination and mateship, was established on 25 April 1915 when the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey. It was the start of a bloody campaign that lasted eight months and saw some 25,000 Australian casualties. This campaign created a legend. The ANZAC spirit. Encapsulating the qualities of courage, determination and mateship first demonstrated at that Gallipoli landing.
This year marks the 98th anniversary of the Gallipoli landing. Today many of us will be commemorating ANZAC Day in so many different ways. It’s a day for Dawn services, Anzac Day Marches, Laying of Wreaths, Wearing of Rosemary (for Remembrance) or Poppies (for the Fallen), gatherings and barbecues with family and friends, or perhaps taking your chances at a game of two-up at the local pub or club.
For me ANZAC Day is also synonymous with ANZAC Biscuits. Baked by wives and mothers during World War I, they were packed in food parcels and sent to Australian and New Zealand soldiers in the trenches. Here is the original recipe for these iconic Australian biscuits updated a little with the addition of a white chocolate ganache. I’ve baked a batch for ANZAC Day. Lest we forget.
ANZAC Biscuits with a White Chocolate Ganache
Makes 16 Sandwiched Anzac Biscuits if level teaspoons of the mixture are rolled and baked
1 cup plain flour
1 cup desiccated coconut
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup rolled oats
125 g butter
2 tablespoons golden syrup
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2 tablespoons boiling water
PREHEAT oven to 160 C. Line two oven trays with baking paper.
COMBINE dry ingredients – flour, coconut, brown sugar and rolled oats in a large bowl.
MELT butter and golden syrup in a saucepan over medium heat.
DISSOLVE bicarbonate of soda in 2 tablespoons of water in a small cup. Add to melted butter and golden syrup mixture. Stir well to combine. The mixture will froth and increase in volume.
POUR the frothy butter mixture into the dry ingredients. Mix well.
ROLL level teaspoonfuls of the mixture into balls and place on lined oven trays. Allow room for the biscuits to spread.
SLIGHTLY flatten the balls with the back of a fork.
BAKE for 15 – 20 minutes in a preheated 160 C oven until biscuits are golden brown. Cool slightly before transferring to wire racks. As they cool the biscuits will harden.
WHEN cool place a little ganache on the smooth side of half the biscuits. Sandwich together with the remaining half.
White Chocolate Ganache
250g white chocolate
125 ml pouring cream
COMBINE chocolate and cream in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir with a metal spoon until smooth. Remove bowl from heat.
SET aside at room temperature to cool, stirring occasionally, until ganache is thick and spreadable.