Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Taking Tea-Drinking To The Next Level

I think it's important, before I begin talking about these biscuits, that I introduce you to a friend of mine. His name, for obvious reasons if you look at the picture on the right, is Beezelbub. Sometimes I have nightmares that he's going to suck out my soul while I sleep, but generally, we get on pretty well.

Beezelbub came free with a giant box of PG Tips teabags, meaning, naturally, that he likes tea. Lots of tea. Tea-drinking happens to be more or less my primary occupation (I average about six cups a day, and I don't mean small cups) so this works for me. But sometimes, a girl needs more than a cup of tea. On these occasions, Beelzebub tends to chow down on some soul, but as my tastes are somewhat less murderous, when I saw the recipe for Earl Grey Tea Biscuits on a food blog round here, I thought it sounded just the job.

I made these as part of a present for my friend Boy's birthday, since he's also a pretty intensive tea-drinker, but not before I snaffled about twenty of them fresh from the oven (they were SMALL, okay?). They don't taste strongly of tea, or anything much really, but it's the whole principle of Tea Biscuits that appeals to me mostly anyway, and they're gorgeous biscuits as they are.

This is ironic as I actually prefer normal tea to Earl Grey, which always tastes a bit like drinking pot pourri to me.

I halved the original recipe by the way, as it seemed to make billions, but my biscuits were very small, so I'd make them a bit bigger than I did. They're a cute size for dunking in a teacup, though ^__^.

Earl Grey Tea Biscuits
Found on Eat Me Delicious, but originally from Martha Stewart Holiday Cookies 2005.
This halved batch makes about 48 apparently, but I'd make them bigger and have fewer next time.

Quantities translated by me, and you know what that means.
For American measurements, use the Eat Me Delicious post.

140g plain flour
2 bags worth finely ground Earl Grey tea leaves (mine were really fine enough without grinding, but I did a bit anyway)
1/4 tsp salt
115g butter
30g icing sugar (I was a bit like o__O over this, so I added a tbsp or so of caster sugar too. Okay, sugar junkie, but whatever)
1/2 tbsp orange zest

1. Whisk flour, tea, and salt in a small bowl; set aside.

2. Put butter, sugar, and orange zest in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low; gradually mix in flour mixture until just combined.

3. Transfer dough to a piece of baking paper and shape into a log. Roll in baking paper to 1 1/4 inches in diameter (*COUGH* OR BIGGER, IF YOU CAN'T JUDGE MEASUREMENTS), prsesing a ruler along edge of parchment at each turn to narrow the log and force out air. Put it on a level baking tray in the freezer until firm, 1 hour (ppft. Half an hour. Impatient, remember?).

4. Preheat oven to 180C. Cut logs into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Space 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment. They don't spread, by the way.

5. Bake biscuits, rotating sheets halfway through,until edges are golden, 13 to 15 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks. They can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature up to 5 days.

It's unavoidable. I'm going to put the kettle on.


eatme_delicious said...

Yum! They turned out beautifully.

ilingc said...

I love tea biscuits. Yours look delicious :)

Anna said...

eatme_delicious and ilingc - thankyou both!

Anonymous said...

Allow me to sip my warm chamomile tea now and wish that I had just one of those lovely biscuits of yours to go with my cup of tea. Lovely!

Pixie said...

Aww lovely sweet biscuits; I'm a tea drinker as well, Clipper being my favourite and I have about 4 a day. Send some my way please. :) A biscuit for a slice of mushy tart?

Anna said...

Ovenhaven - I know, it's just the perfect match, heh. I think I'm going to have to stay permanently stocked up =]

Pixie - Now how can I say no to an offer like that? ^__^ It makes me want to put a stack of tea biscuits in an envelope, from one tea-drinker to another..