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|Bob in Tokyo
Fig Roll Review
|Dear Mr. Nicey, I stumbled across your "site" moments ago when I did a "google" search for Lyons Fig Rolls, and I discovered the "internet" does indeed have a useful function for those inclined to a "modern" lifestyle. That the correspondent from Niigata found said fig rolls in her local supermarket is astounding, as the best I have ever been able to locate in Tokyo (my domicile for the past decade) has been the Jacobs "closed end" variety. I am heartened by the news. My chidhood favourite (and still now, come to think of it) was the open-ended, non-striated-casing type (by Burtons, was it not?) since these lent themselves best to "peeling" or "nibbling" of the casing before plunging into the lushious, fragrant core. Oh my!.....did anyone else get a cerebral rush like I just did? Eleanor might be pleased to know that if there is a branch of the Daimaru "Peacock" supermarket chain in Niigata she should be able to get Waitrose organic "Oaten" biscuits (a classic, fibre-rich, buttery, oat-crunch type - and a damn fine dunker!) along with a few other Waitrose top-end biscuit varieties and other British products (HP sauce, Original and Fruity!) hard to get at a reasonable price in Japan.|
Anyway, I digress. My reason for this contribution is the query from Brian about Grantham gingerbread biscuits, a memory from his childhood in Newark on Trent. I can assure everyone in the biscuit-concerned world that this variety of biscuit is alive and well, and exactly, and delicious, as described. My mum used to make them (God bless her - she sends me Marks 'n' Sparks Extra Strong to keep me functional). Being Manchester folk, I'm not sure where she got the recipe, or even if it's actually an East-Midlands thing, despite the name. If it is, it's surely the best thing ever to come out of Grantham (oops...should I have said that?). I'll post the recipe as soon as I can get it from Mum.
Other matters (1): Taylor's Yorkshire for "a crucial hit" - life affirming on a hungover morning. And, does Co-op "99", an old favourite of mine, still exist?
Other matters (2): It would be useful to have a contribution date for each correspondence or article on the "site". I have qualms, occasionally, about being out of date.
Cheerio, Bob in Tokyo.
P.S. Returning to fig rolls....open-ended, smooth casing is the best. I defy you to disagree.
|Nicey replies: Bob,
It gives me a warm feeling to know that we are helping people across the world to locate proper biscuits. Hoorah, for the wonder of the interweb.
Your point about the contribution date is a good one, I'll see what I can do.
As to fig roll preferences, I think I nailed my colours to the mast in the original review.
||my friend sent me a link to your site and i thought it was extremely wierd and like nothing id ever seen before. i didn't know british people could be like that, you are british aren't you? i couldnt believe you could dedicate almost an entire website to biscuits, tea and crackers. i liked the marmot thing though and the ineffable crab or whatever it was. if you have anymore links to sites like that please send them to me. best wishes, alexx|
|Nicey replies: Yes, of course British people can be like that, although more frequently we're like this.|
As I put down my nice cup of Chinese tea and a half eaten plain chocolate Hob-Nob (don't worry, it'll be eaten by the time I finish writing this), I was reading a couple of letters posted regarding Nasty Biscuits and Flagship biscuits from other nations, and then I realsied that I have come across a biscuit that fits both criteria.
Now, I know that I'm and ex-pat living in the US, but I really must say that the OREO is one of the most revolting things I have ever tasted. It's a national icon over here, and I'm probably risking getting lynched for slamming it, but it's been around for ninety years and it bloody tastes like it has!. Two pseudo-chocolate rounds sandwiching an even dodgier tasting creme filling. Simply Revolting! Even Happy Shopper Super Cheap Own Brand Bourbons are infinitely better that them. I mean, look at the colour, the damn things are nearly black! Put one in your mouth and you'll be yearning for a "Nice" biscuit to take away the horrible taste.
Don't get me wrong, those fresh Chocolate chip cookies they have over here are actually pretty bloody good (although I'm not sure that they really count as biscuits). I just can't see what everyone likes about Oreos.
|Nicey replies: Hello again,
I think the most suspect thing about Oreo's is the eating instructions on the outside, what does that say about the IQ of the intended customers?
I have had Oreos and they aren't too exciting. I see that they are covering them in all sorts gloop to make them more appealing like mint fudge. This to seems like an admission of defeat, if they were all right in the first place they wouldn't need to be mucked about with.
||hello again it's chris holdsworth here.|
i was just wondering, how do you like your tea? Personally i go for the 'milk, one sugar' variety but some crazy folk like my mam have lemon in their tea and no milk which instantly rules out biscuit dunking (apart from Lemon Thins which would obviously compliment the citrus tea). Others prefer their tea to have a sugar concentration higher than a 6 year old child and spoon in the sugar 'en masse' with 4 and 5 spoon fools being commonplace.
My point is: Is there an international standard for tea? Personal preference is fair enough but surely some boffins in Belgium from the EEC or NATO or something have found out the perfect or average level for tea additives.
Maybe we should just ignore their advice, rebel, and drink our tea as we like. Although look at the yanks - they drink theirs cold, and sometimes peach flavoured.
|Nicey replies: Tea, Hot, Milk no Sugar, make it so|
I would like to thank you for highlighting the Abbey Crunch, a biscuit which surely deserves greater popularity. Since returning from Germany (a land poor in natural biscuit resources) I have been disappointed to find the breed absent from supermarket shelves. Hopefully your sterling work may save this unparalleled dunking-confection from extinction.
I look forward to reading your thoughts on the Fox's Crinkle Crunch. You would be advised to try the superb Butter flavour as all the rest are disappointing. Especially the rubbish cream-based varieties.
Cpl. T. And Clover (retd.)
PS. Pink wafers are poor in flavour and texture. Am ambivalent on the Nice. Hope that helps.
|Nicey replies: I've mostly seen Abbey Crunch in triple packs with along with ginger nuts and fruit shortcake for 99p in Iceland. Good hunting.|