"" Writer's Wanderings: New Zealand's Afghan Cookies

Saturday, December 07, 2013

New Zealand's Afghan Cookies

We were introduced to these wonderful cookies, or biscuits as they're called in NZ, at the Lilac Rose Bed and Breakfast in Christchurch. As we were checking in, our host was baking and brought us some of these chocolate delights to have with a cup of tea. Later we began to notice them more and more in bakeries and even in McDonald's McCafes (which are totally unlike our fast-food version). Here's the recipe for all you cookie bakers. It's the right time of the year to be sharing this!

By the way, no one knows where the name Afghan came from. The recipe is very old and appears in many past issues of the popular Edmonds Cookery Book of New Zealand.

Afghan Cookies (Biscuits)

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10-15 minutes

200g butter (7/8 cup), at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups plain flour
1/4 cup cocoa
2 cups cornflakes (unsweetened)
Chocolate Icing (see below)
walnuts, optional

1. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Sift flour and cocoa.

2. Stir into creamed mixture. Fold in cornflakes.

3. Spoon mounds of mixture onto a greased oven tray gently pressing together. (Some recipes suggest they should be rolled into balls and then pressed. The cornflakes will make them easily break apart.)

4. Bake at 180C (375F) for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned and firm.

5. When cold ice with chocolate icing and decorate with a walnut piece if you like.

Chocolate Icing:
200g (7/8 cup) dark chocolate
1/2 cup cream
25g (2 TB) butter

1. Break chocolate into top of a small bowl. Add butter and cream.

2. Set over hot water and heat, stirring constantly, unit it has melted and smooth. Alternatively, microwave on MEDIUM power for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds.

3. Beat until thick before using.

 Now make another batch because these will disappear quickly!

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