The English Kitchen: Abbeys

I wanted to bake us something sweet for a treat to enjoy with a hot drink today, but I didn’t want to make anything that used up too much of my flour, or that made too large an amount of anything.

This is a book that I have had for a number of years.  Traditonal Teatime Recipes, by Jane Pettigrew.  Its a National Trust Book.  I usually find that you can trust their recipes. They are often the same things that they sell in their tea rooms which are attached to their historic properties, and many of the recipes also have a history.

There is no history attached to this recipe.  It is mainly touted as a recipe that can be and is meant to be enjoyed with a nice hot cup of Ceylon tea, morning or afternoon.  We are truly a nation of tea drinkers and we like to dunk.

We don’t drink regular teas or coffees in our home for religious reasons, but we do enjoy hot herbal drinks and rooibos teas.

One thing I liked about this recipe is that it didn’t use a lot of flour. There is a quantity of oats mixed in with it.  Neither does it use any eggs or milk, just a TBS of powdered milk or coffeemate.

Some of its flavour comes from the use of golden syrup, which can lend a bit of a caramel flavour to things. If you can’t find or don’t have golden syrup, feel free to use honey. It is only 1 tsp that you will need.

It is quite a crumbly dry dough, but that is how it is supposed to be. You might think you have done nothing wrong. Use your hands to smoosh it up into walnut sized balls.  There are nothing like the tools God gave us. They perform so well in situations like this.

Laid out on paper lined baking sheets and lightly pressed with the bottom of a glass, they take a bit longer than normal cookies/biscuits to bake.  20 minutes, but they also bake at a lower temperature.

Leave them on the baking sheets to cool for a few minutes before transferring them to a rack to finish cooling.

And then once cooled, you dip half of the cookie into melted chocolate.  I used semi-sweet chocolate chips because that is what I have the most of in this house!

These are perfect dunkers.  They are crisp and have almost a shortbread-like buttery texture.

They are not overly sweet . . .  just sweet enough I find.  The oats add a bit of nuttiness. Overall I would say these are quite moreish!


Yield: 16 cookies


Crisp, oaty and dipped in chocolate.  These moreish biscuits/cookies are perfect to enjoy with a hot cuppa!


For the cookies:

  • 100g butter, softened (1/2 cup)
  • 100g caster sugar (1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp golden syrup (can use corn syrup)
  • 100g self raising flour (14 1/2 TBS)
  • 100g porridge oats (1 1/4 cups) (not old fashioned)
  • 1/2 TBS full cream milk powder (Coffeemate or similar)
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

You will also need:

  • 275g plain or milk chocolate (10 ounces)(I used chocolate chips)


How to cook Abbeys

  1. Preheat the oven to 150*C/300*F/ gas mark 2. Line two baking sheets with baking paper.
  2. Cream together the butter, sugar and corn syrup until light and fluffy. Add the remaining ingredients and work together. It will be a bit crumbly but persevere. Shape with the hands into balls the size of a whole walnut. Place onto the prepared baking trays. Press down lightly with the bottom of a glass.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, until pale golden brown. Let sit on the baking trays for a few minutes before lifting out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. Melt the chocolate in a narrow but deep container. (Use a cup or a small bowl.) Dip the biscuits into the melted chocolate until they are half covered. Then return to the wire rack or greaseproof paper until the chocolate sets completely.
  5. These are really nice served with icecream or fluffy desserts as well.

Did you make this recipe?

If these have a history at all, I have been quite unable to find it.  I guess sometimes things just appear with no history behind them. In any case, you are sure to love these crisp and buttery, oaty cookies!! 

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Author: alexbyu

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