The Masque of the Black Tulip Read Along meeting is coming up this very Thursday, which means… ginger biscuits!
I went digging through my recipe folder, trying to find the ginger biscuit recipe, the one I baked back in the day, that I munched as I wrote The Masque of the Black Tulip. All I remember about it was that it contained cut up bits of crystallized ginger. But there were no recipes in my folder involving cut up bits of crystallized ginger. There were three other print-outs, all dating to roughly the same era, but not one of them was the ginger biscuit.
I suspect the Black Tulip nicked it.
So, here are some substitute recipes with which I’ve been experimenting:
— Christine’s recipe from the Pink Carnation cookery project, which is gingery and delicious, and involved a great deal of research into what an authentically British ginger biscuit would taste like;
— a recipe a lovely person (the name isn’t on the recipe in my folder, so if it was you, just say!) sent me not long after Black Tulip first came out– these were a huge hit with both the kids and me, and it wasn’t until we’d consumed roughly a dozen of them that I realized there wasn’t actually any ginger in them! But you would never ever notice. These are heavy on the cloves, which is the dominant flavor.
— a recipe for chewy ginger cookies that Jessica sent me (hi, Jessica!) as she was doing her Read Along baking. These look remarkably like the ones from my lost chewy ginger biscuit recipe, down to the bits of crystallized ginger. I’m not going to vouch for this being the same recipe, but it does look awfully similar….
— and this authentically period recipe (and its modern equivalent) courtesy of the Jane Austen Centre, including a reference to gingerbread in an 1803 letter from Wordsworth to his sister– the same year in which Black Tulip is set! One has to wonder how these would stand up to Cook’s ginger biscuits….
For those who won’t be ginger biscuiting due to Passover restrictions, I’ve found two likely substitutes:
Do you have preferred ginger biscuit recipes? Or good Passover alternatives? Share them below!
Happy baking– and see you on Thursday!