Wee Scoops

Measure for Measure

Digest of Biscuits

According to an article in the Guardian – you can tell a lot about a person from the biscuits they eat. Readers of tabloid newspapers like pink wafers, whereas readers of “The Scotsman” prefer shortbread and oat biscuits. There are regional variations also. Overall, though the top five biscuits are digestives, cookies, jam rings, chocolate fingers and rich tea biscuits.

So I am pleased for the jam ring making it into the top three, although deep down we know it is really the Jammie Dodger snapping at the heels of cookies. Jammie Dodgers always seemed so decadent and indulgent, as a child – with the sticky jam visible through the wee window. A good biscuit for dissecting and eating creatively.

Cookies make me feel old. I can remember life before cookies. When there were just biscuits. And then the St Enoch centre had a cookie outlet and that was that. Next thing, everywhere was making them. So, they’ve done well to make it to number two in the biscuit charts, even although they are cookies. (Are biscuits a subset of cookies? Or the other way around? Or does it depend on which side of the Atlantic you are standing on?)

Chocolate fingers. Meh. Always a bit melty and a bit insubstantial. But when I was wee my mum made me a Womble House birthday cake the exterior of which featured chocolate fingers –  used to create a convincing log-cabin effect. And Madame Cholet stood at the door with Orinoco.

Rich Tea biscuits take me back to long sessions of playing cards as a child, playing Scabby Queen and dunking countless rich tea biscuits in luke-warm tea. But I don’t ever buy them. They are just not as delicious to dunk as digestives – and they fall off mid-dunk too too often.

My children like Iced Gems and Minnie Moos. But today they spied… Tunnocks Tea Cakes!

Very delicious. And again, can be eaten in any amount of different creative ways.

So, would you bite in, or pick off the chocolate?

We went for the straight-in option.

I’m having a half-hearted attempt at dieting today, so didn’t have the pleasure of sinking my teeth into the soft and delicious mallowy centre, perfect for  complimenting a lovely cup of tea.

Now, Jaffa Cakes – there’s a controversial one! Cakes or biscuits? I’m sure “Europe” has an opinion on that one. Maybe they have the same trouble as banana jam.

So, what’s your favourite biscuit and why? What does it say about you?

As for me, I think it would have to be a Tunnock’s Caramel Wafer. But, as I say, I’m “dieting”.


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21 thoughts on “Digest of Biscuits

  1. My American nephew and his now-wife each spent a year in London as graduate students. When they were married, they spent a week with us on this side of the pond, and within an hour we found them whispering excitingly in the kitchen. “Hob Nobs!” they were saying. “They have Hob Nobs!”

    So when we visit them in the States, we take a care package of Hob Nobs. They bring us chocolate-covered Peanut Butter Cups.

    Don’t know what that says about where we belong in the great scheme of things. But we are all agreed that biscuits/cookies called “Digestives” just wouldn’t make it in the U.S. We had a family contest once to come up with something that would make it on the American market, I think we decided on something like “Chocolate-coated Devils — they’re even good for you!”

    • Yes – digestives is a bit of an unfortunate name. Like some kind of a laxative or something. But it hasn’t done the product any harm! Hob-nobs – very delicious! It used to be Oreos we’d want from the states – but now we can get them here, we don’t bother…

  2. ooh, i do like a pink wafer, tho not the minging “pink panther” ones you get!!! and a jaffa cake is also delicious. others favourites would be blue ribands – tho my eldest sister says they are like eating cardboard (how would she know?!) – and i do love a classic too.
    and what about the kitkat – what do you feel about that one mrs blog? 2 fingers, and theyre a biscuit, but go into a “sweet shop” for a “chocolate bar” and you are faced with a chunky variety or a four finger variety – sneaking in near the chocolate bars…whats that all about then?! hmmm xxx

  3. Rickster on said:

    Mmmm. Biscuits. A Classic bar is hard to beat.

    We discussed the merits of pink wafers at work at lunchtime. Seems like they are a bit like marmite, you either love them or hate them. No other biscuit was as divisive.

    • I always thought the classic was a bit of an odd one – with an undertaste of ginger I wasn’t too keen on. Pink wafers are not worth eating, I don’t think. I’d rather save the calories and trade them in on a chocolate digestive.

  4. eleanor on said:

    Ah biscuits!

    Quite jealous of your Womble House Cake. Were Madame Cholet and Orinoco made of icing or were they plastic figures? I need detail.

    Now, the jaffa cake/biscuit debate is not so much a European case as a case involving the Inland Revenue. The highlight of the course on Tax Law for me. Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin.

    As I recall cakes and biscuits are taxed differently, cakes from memory attracting a more favourable rate of tax. Jaffa Cakes were arguing they were cakes, the Revenue that they were biscuits. Result: they are cakes. Reason: cakes go hard when they are stale, biscuits go soft. Jaffa cakes go hard so they are cakes.

    • So excited you have brought clarity to the jaffa cake issue 😀 I knew there was something up with them. And what a handy bit of trivia about what makes a cake a cake and a biscuit a biscuit. I have trouble with distinctions sometimes -like after breakfast I’ll ask a child to pass me their plate – and they look at me like I’ve got horns or something and they say, “Like, duh, mum, it’s a BOWL”…

    • Oh and the Wombles themselves were plastic. But I think they were official cake-decorations.

  5. McVities even went so far as to make a giant Jaffa to prove its cake status.

    The best biscuits ever are Tunnocks caramel wafers since 54321s disappeared forever.

  6. eleanor on said:

    With you on the Blue Ribands. Not worth the chocolate. Nor are pink wafers. Caramel wafers are hard to beat – these, along with frequent bacon rolls, kept my morning sickness at bay at court so I’ll always have a soft spot for them.

  7. Bandits, Blue ribands, Taxis – all kept in my Nan’s special biscuit tin for when one of her 27 grandchildren visited. We were allowed one with our cup of tea, and it always tasted like the best biscuit in the world.

  8. For an American/French person, all we have really are cookies in the States and biscuits in France. We have a few brand names that have a huge variety like Pepperidge Farm and Keeblers. In France there is Lu and others, it’s been so long. I try not to have one because it is never one, the Pepperidge Farm Milano cookie is to die for and the Keeblers fudge stripe cookie is another killer. I really appreciate the fine points of biscuit versus everything else.

  9. I am a Pepperidge Milano Cookie monster too! But I have to say I love Famous Amos Mini Chocolate Chip and Pecan cookies. I am not familiar with the differences of biscuits, cookies, digestives but I will learn as I visit here. When I think of biscuits, I think of scones that are served in a Tea Room we visit here. I could live on them! I am Scotch Irish, you would think I would be better informed. Especially when it involves FOOD!

  10. Yikes! The Atlantic did something to it all.
    Over here, a biscuit is classed as bread, a sort of quick dinner roll made with baking powder for leavening and NO sugar. We like them hot from the oven, split in two, and dripping with butter and home made jam.
    Over here, Oreos are changing. They do not taste the same. The chocolate part is not very chocolatey any more, and the filling is not very sweet. Bleah. But we can get an off brand or two that do taste more like the originals.
    Now, I do love shortbread, if by that you mean a wonderfully unleavened creation with mostly butter and flour, but doused in powdered sugar after baking. We cut them in 1-inch squares and truly double or triple coat them with the powdered sugar. My favorites are flavored with powdered lavender blossoms in the dough. Oh, MY!
    About grandmothers: mine always made what we called sugar cookies for us, rolled out and cut with shaped cutters, brushed with milk, and sprinkled with plain or colored sugar before baking. She always made these for us.
    I have an ancient recollection I wonder if anyone shares: When my mother would bake cookies, sometimes a few would get overdone. We children used to squabble over these, thinking they tasted almost like chocolate. Chocolate, being expensive, was seldom an ingredient at our house. Anyone?

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