These are more traditionally know as Fork Biscuits in my family. My flatmates re-christened them 'Emma' Biscuits as apparently that is a more appropriate name as I make them (this could get confusing - Emma Cake, Emma Cheesecake...)
The other day I was having lunch with three friends, including my two flatmates. They decided to write a 'To do' list for me with all the baked goods they desire on a napkin. They're so cute.
There were two capitalised entries - Treacle Tart and these biscuits.
Several of the things on the list have already been made - see Chocolate Cheesecake, Cinnamon Rolls - but the others are all things you can expect to see fairly soon. Any other requests?
And so here they are - Emma Biscuits. I've tried to make them for this blog several times but never got the photographs right - and I usually only make one flavour. This time I went a bit mental and did all three variations I use. There's the dark brooding cocoa one, the mellow and unusual hot chocolate one, and then the plain - but still quite stunning in its simplicity - vanilla.
This is a family recipe, scribbled in my 7 yr old hand in the notes section of my mum's copy of Delia's Book of Cakes. It also has a big cat sticker stuck on the back, dating from the same period! They're definitely one of the things I clearly remember making throughout my childhood. I also remember eating the majority of a half-dough mix multiple times - it just tastes so good. Oops.
I've noticed that it bears a lot of resemblance to Nigella's recipe for Granny Boyd's Biscuits in Domestic Goddess. Perhaps Granny Boyd and my Granny got together to create them!
Fork 'Emma' Biscuits
120g golden caster sugar
315g self raising flour
15g dark cocoa powder
15g hot chocolate powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 170C. Cream the butter and sugar together. Split into three. Whizz one third with 100g of the flour and the dark cocoa until it comes together - it won't seem like it will, but don't worry. Form into small balls with your hands and place on a greased baking sheet with a bit of space. Use a fork to squish each ball. Put into the oven for about 10-15 minutes - the cocoa ones won't really change colour, but should be slightly firm to the touch. Remove to a wire rack to cool. Repeat with the next third with the hot chocolate powder and another 100g of flour, then with the final third and the remaining flour and vanilla.
Makes about 50 or so.