A couple of months ago we went to a friend’s place for lunch and my son was introduced to the delights of chocolate coated hobnobs. It’s hard to believe it took twelve and a half years for my son to taste his first chocolate hobnob but once tasted you can never go back. He’s now he’s an addict for life, or as the jingle goes – One nibble and you’re nobbled. Hobnobs are a UK biscuit and a relatively recent addition to the Australian biscuit canon. One of my nephews has had a long time passion for them and in the days when they were hard to find in local supermarkets, he would search them out and buy half a dozen packets to stockpile in the face of scarcity. They are easier to find now and have lost a bit of their exotic cachet but they are still a great mass produced biscuit. I come from a family of tea drinking, biscuit dunkers and hobnobs are one of the best dunking biscuits around.
For those of you who have never had a hobnob biscuit, it’s kind of like a cross between an Anzac and a digestive biscuit. This particular recipe comes from Kate Doran’s Homemade Memories – Childhood treats with a twist, and uses wholemeal flour, oats and as well as being fairly restrained with the sugar. All of this makes for quite a wholesome bikkie. As a seventies kid I was scarred from dense, wholemeal hippy sweets and I spent years reacting against using wholemeal flour in baking but I now really love the extra flavor wholegrain flours bring to baked goods. I’m even beginning to find plain white flour a bit bland and now when I’m making pizza dough I’ll throw in a cup of rye flour just to give the dough extra depth of flavor.
I’m very partial to a plain hobnob biscuit, but my son doesn’t consider the plain, non-chocolate hobnob a real hobnob so I’ve found a good compromise is doubling this recipe and icing half with chocolate and leaving half plain.
Adapted from Kate Doran Homemade Memories
- 125 grams unsalted butter
- 80 grams brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons Golden Syrup
- 100 grams quick cooking oats
- 100 grams wholemeal flour
- 1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda (baking soda)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 100 grams dark chocolate
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Preheat oven to 180F (160 fan forced)
- Cream butter and sugar until pale, add golden syrup and beat in.
- Add oats, wholemeal flour, bicarb soda and baking powder to butter and mix through until combined.
- Roll 2 teaspoons of dough into a ball, place on lined baking tray and press down until about 4 cm in diameter. Place in oven and bake for 10-12 minutes until golden. Allow to cool on trays for five minutes until they harden enough transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
- If icing with chocolate allow biscuits to completely cool. Melt chocolate and butter in bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Spoon a dollop of chocolate on the smooth underside of the biscuit, spread with a palette or butter knife. Set aside to cool and for chocolate to set. Chocolate coated hobnobs will keep for 3-4 days. Plain hobnobs will keep for at least a week in a tin.