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Since we spend most of our working day sat on our arses we actually enjoy a nice cup of tea and a stand up. It was during one of our daily tea breaks whilst discussing the various merits of Fox's Butter Crinkle Crunch and the dunking abilities of Rich Tea Fingers that we decided it would be a great idea to create a website dedicated to the pastime of tea drinking and biscuit appreciation. Surfing the net several minutes later looking for some pre-scanned images of biscuits for our new site we stumbled upon your fantastic site and soon realised that you had surpassed anything that we would be capable of. Therefore we'd like to congratulate you on your excellent work in the promotion of all things tea and biscuit and would like you to just give those of us who like a nice cup of tea and a stand up a quick mention. Also would it be possible to provide some advice on sensible dunking technique for various biscuits, as one of our members is experiencing regular "snap-offs" during dunking, perhaps you could provide this for our top ten regulars in our biscuit tin (in no particular order) :-
Fox's Butter Crinkle Crunch
Rich Tea Fingers
Chocolate Malted Milk
|Nicey replies: Ross,
Thats an admirable biscuit tin running list you've got there. Also good to see that you are taking good care of your crinkle crunches. Personally I would like to see a fruit shortcake or maybe a HobNob in there to get a good all round tin.
I'm a bit of a reformed dunker myself, but when I did partake of that habit it really came down to confidence and timing, these can not be gained overnight but must be learnt. Out of the biscuits in your list I would only dunk the Rich teas, Digestives and as rank outsiders the Crinkle crunch. Dunking chocolate biscuits or cream filled biscuits is generally a no-no although I understand that many people do choose to do this. Cow biscuits are much too pretty dunk and should have the cows nibbled out of them. Gingernuts are all about crunch so again I wouldn't choose to dunk them. Of course when dunking any large diameter biscuit such as the digestive, one has a window of opportunity, whilst the tea level in you cup/mug is high enough to let you get the edge in. As the tea level falls much more dunking and nibbling are required to access the tea. Don't feel bad to ignore all of this if it threatens your personal enjoyment of tea and biscuits.
As for the standing up, it sounds a bit foolhardy, and I'm sorry that your working conditions drive you to such outlandish behavior. I hope that this doesn't extend to your enjoyment of tea outside of the workplace, where sitting down is certainly the optimal way to drink it.
||My dear Nicey|
I can confirm that kids also smell of digestives in Grimsby. At primary school I had to sit next to a particularly aromatic girl at lunchtimes. What I cannot confirm however, is whether or not she was poor. Her cardis never seemed to fit (arms too short), but maybe that was she was a bit portly.
Of course this might mean that she was fat (oops sorry not very nice of me) because she ate far too many digestives and therefore smelled of them (??!!). I dunno.
But have you ever noticed that when dunking digestives you can only fit a little bit in the cup, and when you nibble off that bit, the rest fits perfectly for dunking? Ahem.
|Nicey replies: Joanne,
Thank you for that. The large diameter of the digestive, when dunking, teaches us temperance and restraint through biscuit reshaping, unless they have snapped in half in which case its full speed ahead.
Rich Tea Review
Rich tea fingers. Why? What purpose have they? Structurally they are weaker than Rich Tea so that you have to bolster one with another one when you are dunking (back to back action) and they are as bland as normal Rich Tea. Do people have a preference for finger shaped biscuits in your experience? I can only imagine that people find it easier to stick a whole one in lengthways rather than a round one which may abraze the corners of your mouth as it enters (and scald with hot tea). I also find sponge fingers to have the same propensity to snap under tealogging (these are definitely best suited to making trifles where they have an amazing capacity to soak up booze).
Incidentally I once saw my uncle get a whole ginger nut stuck in his mouth as he tried to put it in face first rather than on its edge (if that makes sense). The whole family watched as my mum had to snap it by jabbing it with a knife - a very dangerous but highly amusing procedure.
|Nicey replies: Well we found that Rich tea fingers taste ever so slightly different to Round Rich teas, but I'm sure the reason for their existence has to do with dunking dynamics as you suggest.
As for Ginger Nuts its funny you should mention them because we have another planned tras-global biscuit head to involving that very species of biccy. Your uncle sounds like he deserves a Rocket Science icon for advancing the field of biscuit eating in a foolhardy and entertaining way.
||A wonderful coincidence has befallen me; a week ago, I made an impulse purchase of a book called "How to Dunk A Doughnut - The Science of Everyday Life" by Len Fisher, as I was intreagued by its large beginning section on the science of dunking biscuits, and then only two or three days afterwards came across by complete coincidence, your most wonderful web site.|
Having completed the book, I can highly recommend it (do not be put off by the doughnut in the title, biscuits receive a larger coverage - I would suggest a change of title). As an avid bisucit-dunker myself, I have always been intreagued by the mechanisms behind the changes that biscuits undergo when submerged in tea, and this book explains the theories at the forefront of modern biscuit research. It is so cutting-edge, that the author is required to admit that all the science behind biscuit-dunking is not totally understood.
Unlike some of us; myself included - Len Fisher accepts and recognises that there is more to life than biscuit science, and his book goes on to explain myriad other phenomena, from the flight of boomerangs and the reasons for the formation of foam to the best way to use tools and the physics of sex.
Not all of the information on biscuit-dunking given in the book is theoretical; much of it is quantitative and practical, giving us insight into the best bisuits to use for dunking. There is even a controversial dunking method suggested to give the longest immersion time possible.
If any of you are interested like me in these subjects, then I can highly recommend this book. I was unable to find it on the American Amazon, but it is on the British one
PS - I agree wholeheartedly with the review of the Leibnitz biscuits on your site. Having just purchased two boxes in the last week, In can testify to how delicious they are - and the extra chocolate gives a better dunk-time. I don't even like dark chocolate, but for these delectations, I make an exception.
||There's an absentee from your review list. Morning Coffee biscuits used to be my favourites, rather perversely, for dunking in tea, while Rich Tea biscuits belonged essentially in coffee (though both had a tendency to wind up in contact with clothing or carpets once they'd achieved an adequately hydrated state). Please could we have a suitable eulogy to this not often visible denizen of the biscuit world. |
Congratulations for generating and maintaining this socially vital web resource!
|Nicey replies: Yes we have really exhausted our capacity to review these dry old biscuits for the short term, the Thin Arrowroot pack really did for us. We will get round to the Morning Coffee but not in the immediate future, as we need some indulgent biscuits for the next few weeks.|