One of the most underrated cooking ingredients I know is the humble cocoa nib. These are a by-product of the chocolate industry, basically the outer shell of the cocoa bean. They give you quite a lot of the benefit of chocolate without the associated fats and sugars. Full of antioxidants and fibre, you can buy them in large packets from health food stores such as Holland and Barrett, and add them to smoothies, baking mixtures, or even eat them raw from the packet. Just as chocolate does, cocoa nibs act to improve mood, and for this reason I thought it was about time I developed something using them as an ingredient to take our mind off the national nervous breakdown we are currently experiencing here in the UK.
I therefore present <drum roll> the Brexit biscuit!
115g softened butter
5 oz stoneground wholemeal flour
70g golden caster sugar
70g soft brown sugar
175g cocoa nibs
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/4 teaspoon salt
First turn the oven to 190C or Gas Mark 5 to pre-heat. Beat the butter and both kinds of sugar until creamy and fluffy. Break the egg into the bowl and mix it in along with the vanilla essence. Next, add the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda and ix it all up again. Then add the cocoa nibs and stir them through until they are evenly distributed throughout your biscuit mixture. Finally take teaspoons of the mix, roll them into a ball in your hands, flatten then a little and then place them onto a greased baking tray. You will need to cook them for about 10 minutes until they have started to go brown. When you take them out of the oven, leave them to cool for a few minutes on the baking tray before removing them, so they don’t fall apart. Then move them onto a cooling rack.
Youngest child recommends them with a glass of milk, I prefer them with a nice cup of filter coffee. Crunchy loveliness.