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This is my first visit to your site - it certainly won't be my last!
I was reading the messages about Abernethy biscuits, and recalled an evil practice from my childhood days in the back streets of Glasgow. An innocent victim was chosen and asked to say, with great slowness and deliberation, "ABERNETHY BISCUITS". Now, I don't know why it is, but children don't (or didn't) usually argue about the whys and wherefores of such bizarre requests; they just get on with it. Anyway, when the victim came to a nice, slow 'TH' at the end of Abernethy, with tongue carefully positioned between the teeth, a sharp tap was administered under the chin, bringing the teeth together with unthinkable consequences for the tongue. Weren't we nice?
I don't know why the word 'Abernethy' was chosen; perhaps because it was commonly enough known not to arose suspicion or cause articulatory hesitation.
(I have to say that I always thought of them as terminally boring. I haven't seen them for years and I don't miss them.)
I'll just go now and get the kettle on. I look forward to popping in again.
Keep up the good work.
|Nicey replies: You should just go an get a packet of Abernethy biscuits and make your peace with them over a big mug of tea. Perhaps you could capture the moment on video. If we got enough people reconciling themselves with biscuits that they have fallen out with since their childhood it could make quite powerful TV, at the very least Channel 5 would probably show it.
Due to assorted Buy One Get One Half Price offers on Fox's Creations and Cadburys selection I seem to have rather overindulged on the biscuit front just recently.
I just thought that perhaps I could offer the consequent spare empty biscuit tins to Chris Jagusz in returning for him popping around in his nice little dress to do my ironing?
||I had to write in about the work mug thing. I am a police officer and you would think that a police station is a relatively safe environment for personal mugs to be left lying around and for other people not to steal them, use them and then hide them away for the next time that they want a cuppa.|
Well, you would be wrong! It has got to the stage that people are having to lock their mugs away and everbody has brought in mugs with their names on them, I have one slight problem, i can't find a mug with Faye on it. Therefore I'm resorting to going to one of those places where you paint your own mug and I am making myself a specific work mug!
I am funny about mugs at the best of times I can't enjoy a Tea fully if it is in a mug that I find offensive, hopefully having a Faye mug at work (considering that I am the only Faye at the station) will improve things for me.
What lengths we go to!
P.S What a fantastic site. Keep up the good work!
|Nicey replies: Faye,
I'm sure there are any number of smart and satirical replies to your message, however I will leave that as an exercise for our readers.
Chocolate Chip Cookies Arnotts vs Maryland Review
|In your "Chocolate Chip Cookies Arnotts vs Maryland" you had inquired about the origin of Maryland's name. After poking about on google,I found a passage in the State history which observed how the state was named. Basically, it read that King George I had given the colony north of Virginia to George Calvert, who was the First Lord of Baltimore. Well, after his death, his son Celius, the second Lord of Baltimore, named the colony "Terra Maria," or "Maryland" in honor of the king's wife, Queen Henrietta Maria. Not quite fascinating, but at the least it's informative.|
History aside I would have to argue that the best chocochip is the one made in one's own kitchen. It's the sort of thing that simply tastes better when you have your own degree of control over the process, and the simplicity of baking them requires no more than three failed attempts before they come out proper.
|Nicey replies: Cheers Clark,
That helps out a good bit, I wonder what the 'working title' for the colony was before the second Lord of Baltimore got involved. It could also have wound up being Henriettaland perhaps.
||I've always gone by the mantra that cakes have eggs in them whilst biscuits don't. Things like scones qualify as cakes because they are bound by an egg (although some tight people use milk), whereas biscuits are a combination of sugar, butter and flour in varying quantities and with ingredients like chocolate, nuts etc to provide the interest. I was taught the basics of baking from childhood and have found that this rule has stood me in good stead when negotiating the often confusing world of teatime snacks.|
Perhaps the lack of eggs is what makes biscuits snappable (Colin's theory) and cakes softer. Maybe the hardening of stale cakes is due to the eggs drying out, and the softening of stale biscuits is due to moisture in the air permeating the hard butter/flour/sugar mix, and the end result in either case is the texture of the base of a tunnock's teacake....mere speculation but I believe it could be scientifically proved.
Of course things would all be simple if it weren't for modern industrial recipes - hydrogenated fats, whey powder, dried egg type stuff - these are the ingredients that turn jaffa cakes into either soft biscuits or dry cakes (althought they are clearly cakes).
I entered this debate to help provide answers, but now I feel drained and confused thinking about
|Nicey replies: Oh yes the inclusion of eggs is yet another fairly sound way marker, on the road between biscuit and cake. There are some exceptions as always. The garibaldi has an egg glaze, and there is the occasional biscuit with some egg in its dough.|