Saturday, 30 January 2010

Pop Biscuits

I was an avid reader as a child, particularly enjoying fantasy stories like CS Lewis' Narnia series, and Enid Blyton's Faraway Tree series.  Those of you familiar with Blyton will likely remember as fondly as I do that every story involved food.  Whether it was fresh bread, warm milk, cakes or lashings of ginger beer, the characters always indulged themselves in something that really tempted the senses.  One tidbit that always stayed with me were the 'Pop Biscuits' that Silky the fairy made in the Faraway Tree books.  Biscuits that popped when you bit them, and oozed a liquid honey centre.  They sounded fantastic.

So when it came to planning the Imbolc baking this year, I knew that the milk and honey oriented temptation I would offer to guests had to be pop biscuits.  Had to be!  My first port of call was of course, google.  Someone had to have done this before, right?  Right.  I came across a blogger who had used Brooke McLay's recipe over on Tongue-N-Cheeky to make some little shortbread biscuits with a hollow centre that went pop when you bit into them.  So 50% there.  Had the pop but not the delicious honey centre.  I tried a batch but didn't get the hollows; what I did get however was a particularly hard but tasty little shortbread button.  Which got me thinking.

What about making shortbread, rolling it, and using it to line a little tart tin?  Mince pies, but with shortbread in place of the pastry and honey in place of the mincemeat?  If you baked the shortbread low enough and for a short enough time then that might work, I thought.  So I tried it.

Pop Biscuits Recipe
175g of plain flour (I used Dove's Farm gluten free)
100g of butter
50g of sugar
Set honey

Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 3.  Cream the butter and sugar until soft, slowly add the flour until you have a stiff dough.  Knead until its sticking together well, then roll out as thin as you can without it tearing and use to line a yorkshire pudding tray.  Add about 3/4 of a teaspoon of set honey to each, then top with a shortbread lid.  Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, leave to cool before removing from the tin!

I had one still warm from the oven and ooooooh my goodness.  Heaven.  That warm honey centre is such a treat.  When they were cooled they were almost as good though, a crisp shortbread biscuit with a gooey honey centre.  A real treat.  They went down very well with the guests who stopped by soon after!

I think with a little experimentation the biscuit could be improved though, perhaps adapting the Tongue-N-Cheeky recipe a little to get a real 'pop' when the biscuit was opened.  Watching the cooking time and perhaps chilling the honey first could all help contain it (it had leaked in places from this batch).  But honestly? That's just being pernickety.  These were gooooooooood.


  1. Ooh! Congratulations :) I can't wait to try these for myself, the very next time I'm near an oven.

  2. We tried your recipe the other day and they were so yummy! We will be making these again, I shared a link to your recipe in a guest post this week :-) Warmly, Kelly