What is Operation Jam Jar?

Operation Jam Jar is all about getting back to basics in the kitchen.

Check out my efforts at cooking from scratch - cakes, soups, biscuits

Learn how to make things that you would normally buy at the supermarket - wraps, ice cream, pizza bases

Try to live a more 'country' lifestyle in the city - making your own jams or relish

Get the skills to enjoy cooking in a thrifty way, and have a bit of fun while you do it

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It’s beginning to smell a lot like Christmas

Soft and Chewy Ginger Biscuits

There is something so Christmasy about the smell of biscuits baking in the oven.  If the biscuits happen to contain ingredients such as cloves, ginger or cinnamon then they are bound to smell like Christmas to me. 

There are a lot of recipes out there for ginger snaps, gingerbread men, ginger kisses and even ginger bombs (look out) but this one really appealed to me.  Soft and chewy and two key components of a good biscuit in my book.  Unlike my husband who loves to almost break his teeth on the super hard ginger nuts, I love the delicate lightness of this biscuit.

I know there are a lot of people that think that baking is too hard, too time consuming, or too messy.  Well it is only one of these things once you get a couple of simple recipes up your sleeve (the day I can bake anything without getting flour on the counter and the floor will be truly magical).  I’m sure you could get these biscuits from your imagination to the oven in less than 10 minutes.


1 ½ cups plain flour
1 ½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp sea salt
100g unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions (makes 12)

Line two baking sheets with baking paper and set aside. 

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, around 3 minutes.  Add the egg and vanilla and mix again for around a minute. 

Add half of your flour and all of the other dry ingredients.  Mix on low for 20 seconds before adding the rest of the flour and mix until combined.

Using your hands, make balls of dough and place them evenly spread on the baking sheets.  Press down slightly to flatten if you like.  They will spread out quite a bit in the oven, so maybe do 6 biscuits per tray.  Place the sheets in the fridge for 15 minutes. 

While the trays are in the fridge, heat your oven to 180°C.  Bake until golden brown on the bottom and top, which takes around 20 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack (at least until it’s safe to eat without burning yourself) before getting stuck in.

These biscuits would be lovely with the addition of some chunks of crystalised ginger thrown in, or even some choc chips.