Ciasteczka

  • This recipe is based on an English recipe 19th century recipe for Rout Biscuits.
  • A rout is a large gathering or party and was often used to describe a card party.
  • They are intended to be eaten in one or two bites.
  • The original recipe was for around four times this amount as the baking was to cater for a large number of people.

INGREDIENTS

  • 225g plain flour
  • 110g butter
  • 90g granulated sugar
  • 110g currants
  • 1 egg – beaten
  • Grated rind of 1 orange
  • 2-3 tablespoons of brandy

METHOD

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM6 – 220°C
  • Flour several baking trays.
  • Rub the butter into the flour.
  • Stir in the sugar, currants and the orange rind.
  • Stir in the egg and enough brandy to make a stiff dough.
  • With your hands make small balls from the dough and place them on the baking sheets.
  • Flatten then slightly.
  • They do not spread when cooking so they can be fairly close together.
  • Bake for 14 – 15 minutes.

Bay Biscuits

  • I came across this recipe for rich buttery biscuits flavoured with bay leaves, which sounded interesting.
  • You use dried bay leaves.
  • I think they are super.

Ingredients

  • 200g plain flour
  • 100g butter
  • 100g granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons of water (approx.)
  • 2 dried bay leaves

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 – 180ºC.
  • Grease some baking trays.
  • Take a tablespoon of sugar out of the 100g.
  • Grind with the bay leaves.
  • *
  • Rub the butter into the flour to get breadcrumbs.
  • Mix in the sugar and the bay leaves and sugar.
  • Slowly add the egg yolks and enough water to make a stiff dough.
  • Roll out thinly on a floured board.
  • Cut out circles using a 7.5cm round cutter.
  • Bake for around 12 minutes.
  • Leave to cool on a wired rack.

Ciasteczka with currants & peel

Ciasteczka is the nearest Polish word for biscuits. It can describe small soft cakes or crisper style biscuits or cookies.

At home we always spoke about biskwity and it was only when I first went to Poland that I realised this was NOT A POLISH WORD!

The word nearest to descripting English biscuits is herbatniki – these are biscuits to have with a cup of tea (herbata).

These are often petit beurre, morning coffee or rich tea type biscuits – plain thin biscuits.

These ciasteczka are quite a bit richer – variations of these I would have enjoyed cutting out with my mother.

Ingredients

  • 240g plain flour
  • 120 butter
  • 120g granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon of baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 50g currants
  • 30g mixed peel
  • 1 egg – beaten
  • 1 tablespoon of milk – optional

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 – 180°C.
  • Grease 2 to 3 baking trays.
  • Rub the butter into the flour till it resembles breadcrumbs.
  • Stir in the rest of the dry ingredients.
  • Add enough of the egg to make a soft dough.
  • You might need some of the milk.
  • Roll out the dough to 1cm thickness.
  • Cut out circles using a 7cm circular cutter.
  • Place on the baking trays.
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes till lightly golden.
  • Leave to cool on a wire baking rack.