Bourbon Biscuits

Confession time:  I am addicted to bourbons.  Not the liquor, of course, I’m nowhere near that rock’n’roll, but the chocolate sandwich biscuits.  Admittedly I have a hearty appetite, but with bourbons it’s something else entirely – I will eat as many as there are in my vicinity.  When I was a child I would munch my way through half a packet quite comfortably before my parents noticed and confiscated the chocolatey treats, and it’s only due to extreme self-discipline that I don’t do the same now.  I simply gaze longingly at the packets in the supermarket, but never allow myself to purchase any.

Even when I got The Primrose Bakery Book and saw this recipe many moons ago, I managed to restrain myself and lasted a good eight months before crumbling and baking a batch for myself.  I suppose it was foolish of me to think that I would maintain any decorum in the baking process:  I love sneaking bits of raw batter or dough when I bake, and I love bourbons.  Obviously bourbon dough is a thing of unimaginable beauty.  It must be the golden syrup, making the dough so sweet, soft and pliable.  So a fair bit of the dough didn’t exactly make it to the oven, but the biscuits I did make were really lovely.  And I didn’t even eat the whole lot by myself in one sitting, which shows a surprising amount of generosity and restraint.  How I’ve matured!

Bourbon Biscuits

From The Primrose Bakery Book

Ingredients:

For the biscuits:

225g vegan margarine/spread

225g golden caster sugar (I just used standard caster sugar)

4 heaped tsp golden syrup

340g self raising flour

115g cornflour

115g cocoa powder

4 tbsp water (more if needed)

For the filling:

2 tbsp cocoa powder

4 tsp warm water

115g vegan margarine/spread

6 tbsp icing sugar (more if needed)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

1.  Make the biscuits first.  Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking tray with baking paper.  Cream the spread, sugar and golden syrup together in a bowl.

2.  Sift the flour, cornflour and cocoa powder into the bowl, add the water and beat together.  I added a splash more water, you may need to do the same – but be cautious as it can turn sticky quite quickly.  Bring it together and knead it into a thick dough.  You can either chill it in the fridge or use it straight away.  If you are a fan of unbaked dough (and who isn’t?), let me tell you that it is absolutely insanely delicious at this stage.

3.  Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of 3-4mm.Cut out 5cm circles – I’d recommend flouring the cutter to avoid the misshapen circles I ended up with.

4.  Place the circles on the prepared baking tray, leaving a little space between them as they spread a bit.  Bake for 10-12 minutes – obviously they are already dark, so don’t let them overcook, take them out when they have firmed up but are not completely solid.

5.  Transfer them to a wire rack to cool.

6.  Meanwhile, get started on the icing.  Stir together the cocoa powder and warm water to form a paste.  In a separate bowl, beat the spread, icing sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Beat in the cocoa paste.  (I chilled it for a while here, but if you live in a cooler climate this may not be necessary.)

7.  Sandwich 2 biscuits together with a thin layer of icing.  Devour them, if you are like me, immediately.

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