Honey biscuits

Honey biscuits

Best Kitchen Basics
a lot
Petrina Tinslay

The smell of these biscuits baking brings a tear to my cynical eye. Nanna lived in Tanunda in the Barossa Valley and her family had lived there since the 1860s, after emigrating from Prussia and Silesia. She lived in a big old stone house built by her grandfather. Every year at Christmas time Nanna and Great Nanna would make these honey biscuits. We would always arrive green with travel sickness after rolling around the bench seat of the Holden. After a bit of fresh air and a ‘glass of lemonade’, the biscuit tin would come out and we could choose our ‘shape’ – little snowmen with white coats and sugared almonds, or ducks and rabbits with crunchy ears and silver cachou eyes.


Quantity Ingredient
900g runny honey
450g raw sugar
4 whole eggs, plus 1 egg white
1.7kg plain flour
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon bicarbonate of soda
sugared almonds, to decorate
240g icing sugar
1 teaspoon lemon, juiced


  1. In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the honey.
  2. Transfer the honey to a very large bowl with the raw sugar and whole eggs. Gradually sift and stir in the flour, spices and bicarbonate of soda until you get a stiff mixture that is neither dry nor sticky. (The quantity of flour will vary slightly every batch.)
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave overnight in the refrigerator.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  5. For simple round biscuits, roll 1 tablespoon of dough into a ball and place it on the lined baking tray. Flatten slightly.
  6. Repeat with the remaining dough, leaving a 1 cm space between the balls. Press a sugared almond into the top of each ball. (Alternatively, use decorative cookie cutters of your choice in various shapes.)
  7. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the biscuits have a nice golden colour. Times will vary slightly depending on the thickness of the biscuit. A thin biscuit will be crisp while a ball will be softer.
  8. Allow to set for a couple of minutes on the tray before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
  9. While the biscuits are cooling, whisk the egg white in a bowl until just broken up. Whisk in the icing sugar to form a thin icing. Stir in the lemon juice to assist hardening the icing.
  10. Decorate the cooled biscuits with the icing and leave for 25 minutes to set.


  • Tradition makes things taste better.
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