biscuits for dunking

by Lauren Bravo

The great British tea break is sacred, and it would be nothing without the perfect biscuit to dunk in your cup. Performing in flavour, texture and structural integrity, here are the greatest dunkers around – just don’t let it drop!

Biscotti

These twice-baked beauties are the probably hardiest biscuit around. Also known as cantuccini, meaning “coffee bread”, the nutty fingers are baked as a whole loaf and made crunchy by slicing them while still hot from the oven. We love studding them with cranberry and pistachio for a bit of festive colour, but there aren’t many nut, fruit and spice combinations that biscotti can’t carry with aplomb.

In their native Italy they’re most likely to be served as an after-dinner nibble with a glass of Vin Santo – but elsewhere biscotti have been embraced as the perfect companion to a cuppa or a coffee. Their shape makes them ideal for dunking, and they get bonus points for easy transferral from mug to mouth once they’ve soaked up your brew.

Jammy Dodgers

Soft, crumbly shortbread, though delicious, is normally one of the weaker choices in the dunking stakes. But Jammy Dodgers have a secret weapon – their sticky raspberry centres provide the perfect adhesive, holding everything together nicely in your cup. An architectural triumph.

Gingerbread

Gingerbread and ginger biscuits are loved in so many parts of the world. They run the whole gamut from rock-hard ginger nuts to the soft, treacly parkin beloved by northerners.

Where dunking’s concerned you can’t go wrong with a sturdy gingerbread man (although let it be known that only sadists eat the head first), but for real sensory pleasure try Germany’s lebkuchen. There won’t be time for a long dip before this headily spiced honey biscuit turns to mush, but leave it just long enough to soften and you’re in for a real treat.

Try Jamie’s ultimate gingerbread recipe, or even have a pop at Jody’s amazing gluten-free version!

Chocolate chip cookies

There’s only one thing better than chocolate, and that is melted chocolate – as proved by our dunking habits. Last year a poll by netvouchercodes.co.uk declared the chocolate digestive as Britain’s favourite dunker, while Australians have long practiced the art of sucking tea through a chocolate-coated biscuit bar, known in legend as ‘the Tim-Tam Slam’.

But we think you can go one better with freshly-baked cookies, just as comforting with hot tea as they are with cold milk to our American chums. For ultimate dunking you want it packed with ready-to-melt chocolate (use chunks rather than chips) and golden syrup for a chewy texture. True cookie monsters have a chilled roll of dough in their fridge, ready to cut and bake whenever occasion calls.

Happy dunking!

About the author

The Flour Station grew out of the basement of Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Restaurant. We soon ran out of space and branched out to our own bakery premises. Not long after that, we set up our first stall at Borough Market and since then we’ve been baking our delicious sourdough breads for top notch café, delis and restaurants across London as well as our weekly market stalls. We’re firm believers in doing things the old fashioned slow way when it comes to making our breads. Each one has a natural yeast starter and the dough is given all the time it needs to develop its wonderful texture and flavour, which may mean the best part of a whole day. Once ready, the dough is divided and shaped by hand and baked in a stone based oven. This intricate process produces a sensational loaf with a good crust, a tasty crumb and a depth of flavour and texture unparalleled in conventional bread. We share our passion for real bread with top chefs and a loyal band of customers who return week after week to our market stalls. We draw inspiration from both when it comes to developing new breads, experimenting with new ingredients and new ideas as well as resurrecting forgotten classic British bakery favourites. Through this blog we hope to share with you the ups and downs, highs and lows, questions and answers that come our way whilst we continue to bake our lovely breads.

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