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Not to be completey scuppered whilst living without a kitchen, I do still have access to my old cooker and the sink, so cooking hasn't been completely stopped - only batch cooking and baking, preserving and pastry or pasta making have had to temporarily cease. But we can't possibly do without biscuits!
Being a firm fan of websites like Approved Food and Food Bargains, I have always got a good stock of tinned butter and an assortment of flours, but my last order comprised of almost 25kg of sunflower and sesame seed bread flour, as I simply couldn't resist the bulk offer. I had assumed this to be bread mix, but it turned out to be gluten free flour with seeds, no yeast added. Surprisingly, it has been a bit of a bonus, despite my initial disappointment. "Why?" I hear some ask...
It's flour! And the basic ingredients needed for frugal biscuit making are flour and butter or margarine, mixed with whatever else you have available. Today I tried using this gluten free bread flour to bake some cookies and they turned out just fine - and frugal.
With the tinned butter costing only 33p per 400g tin, I have no qualms about experimenting with baking - nothing has been wasted. So, I melted some of the butter, added the last of an old jar of honey, ladeled in some of the sesame and sunflower seed flour and then added in a scoop of oats, extra sesame seeds and some wheatgerm for good measure. To this, I blended in an egg. Would you believe... it turned into cookie dough!
*Please note that for the purposes of keeping this recipe completely gluten free, omit the wheatgerm and porridge oats, substituting with sultanas, raisins or whatever else you like.
Within half an hour of starting, I had two trays of biscuits and the spare cookie dough wrapped and put into the fridge for baking next time the oven's hot.
The fantastic thing about baking frugal biscuits is that you can add absolutely anything to them - nuts, dried fruit, chocolate, syrup or treacle, peanut butter... the list goes on and is governed only by your imagination. Almost any flour available will bake you biscuits of some description and you have full control of what gets added.
For biscuit and shortbread making, you can find some of our frugal recipes in the forum at http://frugaldom.myfreeforum.org plus you can follow @Frugaldom on Twitter so you can share the news from other frugalers and from some of the artists, writers, makers and crafters who are joining us in the Scottish Web Directory project (free advertising for Scottish based homeworkers and small businesses) for 2013. If you are on Facebook, check out the Scottish Web Directory page and hit 'like' if you like.