Tasty Ginger Biscuits

The other day I had to cook for work. Not for a charity fundraiser, birthday or other event, no. For work. We were putting together a little magazine and I needed the recipe and pictures for a wintery snack. So I made the Truly Luscious Hot Chocolate, but I was looking for something fun and tasty to dunk in it. Ginger biscuits, of course. Having never made them before, I had to look around. I found two recipes and adapted them into this:

For 12-15 biscuits
Prep: 15 minutes
Cooking: 15-20 minutes

200g (7oz) self-raising flour
120g (4 oz) soft brown sugar
2 tsp ground ginger
1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
60g (2 oz) butter (at room temperature)
1 rounded tsp golden syrup
1 small egg, beaten

First of all, you may need to warm the golden syrup as it is quite thick and stickystraight out of the tin: Pour the golden syrup in a small glass and place it in a bowl of hot water.
Preheat the oven at 180C (350F) (Gas 4).
While everything is warming up, place all the dry ingredients in a bowl: flour, sugar, bicarbonate and ginger. Mix together.
Work the butter in the mixture. It turns into a very dry crumble.
Add the golden syrup, then add the beaten egg bit by bit. The mixture should hold itself together quite well.
Roll the mixture into walnut-sized balls and place them on greased baking sheets or foil. Space them out as they will spread as they cook!
Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. The longer you leave them to cook, the harder they will be, so if you like them soft and chewy, remember to set your timer!

You can even decorate them with coloured icing for special occasions!
They will hold for 3-4 days in a tin so you can make loads and treat your family and friends around Christmas!


Truly Luscious Hot Chocolate

December is coming quick. And while I look forward to the frenzy of work (I work in a Christmas-centric industry), Christmas shopping, Christmas cooking, Christmas parties, and the prospect of moving in our new house, repainting it and running the furniture shops to find ideas ahead of the January sale, there is one thing that sounds just a tad more appealing right now, especially as I have the sniffles: snuggling down on the sofa in my comfy tracksuit pants and hoodie and drinking this amazing hot chocolate!

For 4 people
Prep: 10 minutes


1L (1 3/4 pint) milk
100g dark chocolate broken in small chunks
1 level tsp cinnamon powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
8 marshmallows
Chocolate or nutmeg powder to decorate


Heat the milk, vanilla and cinnamon in a saucepan until it simmers.
Remove the pan from the heat. Add the chocolate chunks and stir until the chocolate melts.
When the chocolate has fully melted you can whisk vigorously to create some froth.
Pour into 4 mugs
Add two marshmallows in each mug and decorate with a dusting of chocolate or nutmeg powder.

No need to add sugar as the melting marshmallows will bring that sweet touch. You could add a dollop of crème if dark chocolate is too strong for you but in terms of texture, again, the marshmallows do make it really creamy as well!

Now where is that DVD of Desperate Housewives again???