Recipe Repertoire 4/52...

27 February, 2014

I am already lagging behind. In my attempt for 2014 to expand my culinary consciousness I am lamentably behind the eight ball. It is week seven of the year, and I have only managed four recipe repertoires this year. I need to up my game. 

However, with cooler weather I have been more interested in cooking. Feeling the need for savoury munchies, I perused my cookbook collection to a recipe suiting said cravings.

This looked suitable.

I mean, a recipe with equal quantities of butter and flour. What could possibly be wrong with this?

Now I am not really an anchovy fan, but I do love them used in the bases of risottos or pasta sauce, where they are added to the sauteed oniony/garlicy base and melt in giving a lovely savoury, salty edge. So I was prepared to give them a try.

This recipe comes from the book Tamasin's Kitchen Classics, by Tamasin Day-Lewis.

(Yes, sister of Daniel Day-Lewis, actor extraordinaire).

I wouldn't say this is the most fabulous book ever, but I do like her style of cooking. Very homey, country style cooking, which certainly has its place. I actually first liked her work when I came across the book 'Tarts With Tops On', which was all about pies. Oh, how hilarious.

This recipe is really easy. Preheat oven. Get out food processor. Whiz chilli, anchovies, parmesan, add butter and flour and blend. Roll. Slice. Put on tray in oven. Remove when golden brown. Eat.

I added an extra level by rolling the raw dough in nigella seeds, which this year I have again harvested for baking.

Mine didn't have quite the red and brown flecks of the original, but they were still pretty.

I loved the texture of these: crispy, buttery and oh-so-moreish. In fact, I had to bake them in batches of no more than a few at a time because I ate them all immediately. The good news is you can keep the dough in the fridge for weeks, ready to slice up and bake at a moments notice if cheesy biscuit cravings occur.

The only thing was I didn't really love the anchovy. I would leave that out next time.

Overall though, a lovely recipe to have up the sleeve. Another one for the recipe repertoire.


  1. I have a similar recipe by Belinda Jefferies. Cheesy, with a hint of chilli and no anchovies. I put the rolls into the freezer, cut and go. They made a great Christmas gift last year. I just harvested some nigella seeds at a clients as well but to re sow as there weren't too many

    1. That is an excellent idea. Do you find they cut ok straight out of the freezer?
      I harvest some nigella seeds for cooking most year, but then my garden is full of them.

  2. oooh yum, how could you not eat these all in one sitting, in all their parmesany glory?!
    i too would freeze the dough - biscuits tend to cut well from the freezer; if not, a minute or two to soften slightly is all it takes
    yum again!

    1. How not, indeed!
      Thanks for the freeze/thaw info. I shall try that next time I make a batch!