ANZAC Day – 25 April, 2016
“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them”.
I’ve only been to one dawn service. It was in Melbourne, Victoria about 18 years ago and as miserable, cold and wet as it was, I found it heart warming that so many people turned out to pay their respects to service men and women, young and old and those gone but not forgotten.
As many of our service men and women prepare for todays ANZAC day marches around Australia I realised that I know absolutely very little about the humble ANZAC biscuit.
For those unfamiliar with Australian and New Zealand history, ANZAC day falls on the 25th of April each year. It is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand and commemorates the anniversary of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) landing in the Gallipoli Peninsula, Turkey during World War I. Nowadays, it is a day that goes beyond the anniversary of that landing and honors the service men and women both past and present.
The exact origins of the ANZAC biscuit are not so clear, it can however be traced back to the Scottish oat cakes. The original biscuit, used in soldiers ration packs was not sweet at all. According to the Australian War Memorial the ANZAC biscuit or Soldier’s biscuit was a hard or tile like wafer that the soldiers were given as part of their rations. The biscuit was given instead of bread due to its long shelf-life, however wasn’t said to be very palatable.
The current sweet version appeared in cook books during the 1920’s and was used at fete’s for fundraising for the troops overseas. With ingredients such as butter, flour, coconut, golden syrup and bi-carb soda it has also been suggested that the wives would make these biscuits to send to the troops overseas because of their long shelf life. Unlike traditional biscuits no eggs were required!
Miss H loves ANZAC biscuits, however with having a wobbly tooth these slightly more chewy biscuits are just the perfect treat to share with friends and family both young and old.