Irish Currant Tea Biscuits

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


I was almost an Australian.  True story.  Back in the early 1800's in Ireland, my great, great, great.... grandfather, Francis, was accused of owing back taxes.  Since he couldn't pay, the government took his horses as payment.  So you know what the SOB did?  He stole them back and got in a whole lot of trouble.  He was jailed and sentenced to be taken to Australia where all the thieves used to go.  Somehow he escaped and made it to Pennsylvania.  Thanks a lot, Francis.  Thanks a lot.

I made these tea biscuits out of the cookbooklette, Favourite Irish Teatime Recipes, which I received this past Christmas from my father.  I had to change almost all of the ingredients to make them gluten-free and vegan.  The original recipe called for lard(oh, the Irish).  Luckily, they turned out great and were thoroughly enjoyed by my tea-obsessed brother and his co-workers.

A note about these biscuits:  If you are looking for a soft, sugary cookie, these are not for you.  They are crunchy, very lightly sweetened biscuits that masquerade as cookies.  They hold up well to dunking in tea, and pair particularly well with Earl Grey. 

Irish Currant Tea Biscuits
adapted from Favourite Irish Teatime Recipes
3/4 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup teff flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/3 cup vegan sugar
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup + 1 tbsp Earth Balance
1 1/2 tsp ener-g egg replacer mixed with 2 tsp warm water and set aside for 5 minutes
1/4 cup almond milk
1/2 c currants

Line a baking pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, sugar, xanthan gum, and baking powder.  Using a fork, pastry cutter, or delicate hands, cut Earth Balance into the mixture until it is evenly crumbly.  Mix in the egg replacer and currants.  Add in the milk and continue to mix until a firm dough forms.  If it is still dry, add a little more almond milk, one tablespoon at a time. 

Roll dough out until it is 1/2" thick.  Cut out biscuits using a 2 1/2" cookie cutter, or into squares.  Prick with a fork.  Transfer biscuits onto a parchment lined plate and put in the freezer for about 10 minutes, or until very cold(learned from Ashlae).

Preheat oven to 350.  Remove chilled biscuit dough from freezer and transfer to prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned.  Transfer to wire rack to cook completely.  Serve with tea and don't forget to dunk!  Enjoy!

20 comments:

  1. Hmmmmmm, makes me wonder how much of that boldness stayed within the generational line and made its why into your personality...*wink* Now my mouth is seriously watering for some tea to eat with my crunchy biscuits!

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    1. oh well thank you, sweet lady! i don't mess around ;)

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  2. Looks lovely Caitlin! I prefer savory to sweet, so these look perfect. I've never used sorghum flour before, but will have to find some now!

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    1. yay! thanks, erin! complements from you are seriously awesome. i'm the same way, give me savory over sweet any day of the week.

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  3. The write up is so fun! Thank you indeed that you are here:) I love crunchy mildy sweet biscuits.. tey go perfectly with the indian chai tea! love these prettiees.

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    1. thank you, richa! oooh, indian tea sounds lovely!

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  4. Ooh these DO look tasty! Thanks for posting this recipe.
    My son's Toddler Group Teacher is Irish and I rather like the idea of making some for her.
    Cheers,
    Nina

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    1. thank you, nina! if you make them for her, let me know what she thinks! :)

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  5. I wonder what sorts of goodies you would be making instead of your Irish tea biscuits if you had been born Australian.

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  6. These sounds great! What exactly is vegan sugar? I always thought it was anyway..

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    1. thanks, mary!

      although sugar does not contain animal ingredients, it has to do with the way it is processed. regular sugar is refined with animal bone char. vegan sugar is not.

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  7. They look so tasty - and so much better for having no lard in!

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    1. yeah..lard is just no good! yay for being animal fat free! ;)

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  8. Wow, These sounds so good and healthy even I don't even know most of the ingredients. But from what I see, I'm sure they tastes delicious. I wish I could have some. ^__^

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    1. oh, orangelatte, i'm sorry about that. i suppose i've gotten used to vegan and gluten-free ingredients. but looking over the ingredient list now, it does seem like it's filled with things those that bake with regular flour, milk, eggs, and butter wouldn't necessarily recognize..

      anyway! thank you!

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  9. Teehee! I *am* Australian because some ancestor of mine decided she needed a new dress so stole some fabric in England and got sent to be a convict. Woot! Can I eat these biscuits anyway? :P

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    1. HAHA! now THAT is awesome. you can definitely have these biscuits. you're my people!

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  10. I had to stop myself from laughing so hard about your story; so funny, Australia doesn;t sound like such bad punishment - I can totally see my tea dunking self with these cookies, much like your brother I am a bit tea obsessed!

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    1. i know! australia sounds delightful! and get dippin!

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