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||I was very pleased to see you had mentioned Empire Biscuits, my most favourite of hot beverage accompaniment.|
I thought I could perhapd shed some light on where the name comes form. Before World War 2 they were actually known as 'German Biscuits' but the name was changed to give more of a patriotic feel. Of course - I have no idea where the name 'German Biscuits' came from - I have never been to Germany and can't confirm if they are available there. (this information actually came from Billy Connolly's biography)
Another couple of points:
* The filling tends to be strawberry jam in the kind I buy.
* Supermarket packs have Jelly Tots on top instead of a glace cherry.
||Just looking at your Jammie Dodgers poll, the “bring back the old ones” is winning hands down. But which ‘old ones’? The product has gone through several Doctor Who-style regenerations, of which the most radical was turning the bottom biscuit up-side down (or right-way up depending how you look at it). Up until the early 1980’s, the base biscuit was presented with the flat ‘underside’ facing up, so that the overall profile was a pleasing oval nature. A bit like the classic flying saucer shape. Then the jam was changed from a hard viscous dollop to a softer, more user-friendly variety. However, this made them much more difficult to make as the softer jam didn’t set so quickly and tended to run off the flat surface of the biscuit in a messy non-user-friendly way. The solution was to flip the base biscuit over and mould the top surface so that it had a shallow bowl, guarded by a ring of decorative but unseen embossings. This meant that the pleasing oval profile was no longer achievable, but at least the consumer got a nice soft jam that didn’t leave a sticky trail between teeth and biscuit. The designs on the top biscuit (a variety of cut-out shapes including a celtic cross) were also dropped in favour of a having a heart-shaped hole on every biscuit.|
Excellent piece of research by POST CTI Technical Support Team into supermarket doughnuts, but what about the poor independent baker, struggling in high streets abandoned for "retail parks" by larger firms?
The best doughnuts in the world (according to a scientific survey of one person, me) come from Beaney's bakery under the railway arches in Strood, Kent. On the other hand, a bakery that shall remain nameless (by the bus station in Rotherham) had no jam doughnuts at all. What's that all about? Call yourself a baker's?
Is there a public transport and bakeries theme developing here? Oh dear, rambling now
|POST CTI Technical Support Team
||Dear Mr Nicey,|
Inspired by your web site we have been busy rating a selection of doughnuts which can be enjoyed whilst having a nice cup of tea and a sit down. Our scientific analysis has helped us to avoid the disappointment of having a nice cup of tea and a sit down ruined by an under achieving doughnut. We would like to share our results with you and your readers.
Our team of highly qualified doughnut technicians have studiously evaluated each offering from the leading doughnut retailers, grading their experiences against a pre-defined set of criteria. We have used these results to determine the best doughnut overall and the best value for money doughnut. The winners of each category are as follows:
2004 Best Doughnut: Marks and Spencer
2004 Best Value for Money Doughnut: Morrisons (Pack of 5)
We expect the results to spark furious debate and we are quite prepared to re-evaluate any doughnuts if required (except Alldays).
POST CTI Technical Support Team
|Retailer||Date||Price (£)||Packaging||Jam Content||Jam Quality||Appearance||Coating Quality||Texture||Average||Total||Comments|
|Sainsbury's (Box of 10)||20/7/04||0.099||7||4||5||6||6||4||5.3||323.2||More bang for your buck|
|Tesco Metro (Bag of 5)||7/7/04||0.116||8||5||5||6||6||6||6.0||310.3||Gobsmacked.|
|Asda (Bag of 5)||8/7/04||0.112||7||4||4||4||5||4||4.7||250.0||Wow.|
|Safeway (Supermarket)||1/7/04||0.1475||4||5||6||6||4||7||5.3||216.9||Focussed on doughnut not packaging resulting in a first-class experience.|
|Safeway (Bag of 10)||29/9/04||0.099||5||3||3||4||3||3||3.5||212.1||Average|
|Marks & Spencer||18/6/04||0.25||9||10||8||7||8||9||8.5||204.0||Sets the standard. Well done.|
|Safeway (Garage)||16/7/04||0.1475||5||3||3||4||4||3||3.7||149.2||Let down.|
|Waitrose||15/6/04||0.2425||6||3||5||7||4||8||5.5||136.1||Needs twice as much Jam. Premium price for an average doughnut.|
|Tesco Metro (loose)||30/6/04||0.3||1||3||4||3||1||4||2.7||53.3||Disappointing.|
|Mary Rose Bakery (Alldays)||21/7/04||0.345||2||2||1||3||2||2||2.0||34.8||Shocking|
|Nicey replies: This is outstanding work of the highest level, we all owe you a debt of thanks.|
||Good Afternoon! |
Jim Urpeth asks if there are any other biscuits named after philosophers, would it be stretching the definition of philosopher too far to include Newton (Isaac and fig)?
Keep up the good work!
|Nicey replies: Yep, I think we had him down as a mathematician. Perhaps some up and coming modern day Philosopher can change his/her name by deed poll to 'Jam-Ring'. Perhaps Mr Urpeth himself could oblige, 'Jim Jam-Ring' is lovely cheerful sort of a name isn't?|