Fabric, faffing and lunchbox fillers

Van is in Melbourne for a couple of days this week, and she and I met up at Patchwork on Central Park first thing yesterday morning after I dropped Amelia at preschool. Van had never been there and was keen to pick up some cute fabric so it was the perfect way to start our day of crafting. While I was there I was able to see some samples of Denise Schmidt’s new range in real life and I was more than impressed. I thought I might end up being a little disappointed after all the hype but the colours are so perfect and the fabric is beautifully soft. Lynn gave me a little left over sample to bring home (thanks Lynn!) and I have it sitting on my desk here like a little piece of precious gold.

I am looking forward to getting some in the near future as the oranges and pinks are just about perfect to go in the baby’s room.

Unfortunatley the rest of my crafting day was a little less succesful. While Van knuckled down and started producing new toy prototypes in calico, I faffed about, flicked through toy pattern books and couldn’t find any focus at all. I can see how she gets so much done, she doesn’t dither, or procrastinate – she just leaps in and goes for it. Something to keep in mind.

On the home-front; This afternoon I made a batch of Mum’s Anzac Biscuits because they are easy, Amelia will eat them for snack time at Kinder and they are relatively healthy. I’m a few days late to make this a truly topical piece of writing, but apparently these biscuits were originally made by women in Australia and New Zealand to send over to troops fighting in World War I and were designed to withstand a long and arduous naval voyage, so they will no doubt survive a day in a preschooler’s lunchbox. Mum has added various seeds and goodies to her recipe, making it a little different from the basic rolled oats and coconut version, but it’s truly delicious.

Jan’s Anzac Biscuits
Makes about 20 small biscuits
1 cup of rolled oats
1 cup of plain flour
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1 cup of shredded coconut
2 tablespoons of golden syrup
125 g butter
1 tablespoon of boiling water
1/2 teaspoon of bicarb soda
Any or all of:
1/4 cup of flaked almonds*
1/4 cup of sunflower seeds*
1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup of chopped dried apricots*
1/4 cup of chopped dried dates

Mix oats, flour, sugar, coconut and any of the optional extras in a bowl. Melt butter and golden syrup over a low heat then add to the dry mix along with the bicarb soda and boiling water. Mix and spoon small flattened mounds onto a tray. Bake in a oven at 150°c for 20 minutes. Leave to cool.

* the optional extras which I included

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28 Responses

  1. I found out about that fabric shop a while ago from your blog, I reall yhave to go and have a look soon!
    I love Anzac bicuits, but we didn’t make any this yer.

  2. Thank you for the recipe! I use a similar one for these cookies. I had no idea what ANZAC stood for until I shared some with a friend of mine from New Zealand one day and she explained the same story to me.Yum! I haven’t made these in awhile, so I’ll have to try out your recipe. First, though, I’ll have to track down some golden syrup. It’s not easy to find in the U.S. so I might have to look for it in Canada next time I go.

  3. hey claire! im a long time reader of your blog, who’s an aussie living in washington DC. wanted to say that im loving the return of illustrations – it’s been a while since we’ve been priveleged to see some! the ANZAC bickies sound really good. i made some this year for my american roommmates and workmates and they LOVED it. will have to try your recipe next year.:)

  4. Am so glad that you liked the Denyse Schmidt because when I first saw it on-line, I thought of you and your orange/blue room. Am very jealous that you have a coveted piece. I’m looking for an excuse to buy some. And we made Anzacs the other day because Beth learnt all about them at school and was keen to make some (ie. lick the bowl). They have graced her lunchbox too and both my girls really like them. Now that I have your Mum’s recipe, I can sneak even more goodies into them – thanks.

  5. Your little illustrations are to die for. Thank you for treating us to a few!
    Oh, that orange fabric is too cute. That WOULD be good in a baby’s room!

  6. I love Denise Schmidt’s stuff and didn’t know that she had a line of fabric out! I love the sample — the pink is too gorgeous.
    And that biscuit! Wow. I’m going to have to try that one!

  7. What a yummy sounding recipe. Are the cookies… I mean biscuits… crunchy or chewy? I’m guessing chewy. Yum!

  8. Those look delicious! I’ll have to try them after I get moved!
    Just have to say, thank you for being such an inspiration to me. I started my own blog just yesterday and it is in part, because I love to lurk about yours so much!

    Thank you!

  9. fernleafy@yahoo.com says:

    Hi Claire,
    Great illustration! I too am a regular visitor to your blog, and especially enjoy it when you add one of your fun illustrations (or photo of your latest crafty creation!). I am also a Mom (living in Canada) of 2 little girls aged 2 1/2 and 6 months, so I appreciate your stories about your experiences with Amelia! I am also an artist and love your blog for the inspiration you provide!



  10. pobrien@fb.org says:

    I’ve just started reading your blog and I really like it. I’d like to try your recipe for Anzac Biscuts. I’m from Chicago and I don’t really know what Golden Syrup is???

  11. oooh that sounds like a fab qiuling store. i go to melbourne a few times a year for work so I might just have to make a trip to it. I just got Denyse Schmidts quilting book so I’m all about quilts at the moment (having never done one or wanted to do one in the past but have suddenly decided to do one, as you do.) I didn’t get around to doing anzac bikkies this year, yours look yummo.

  12. hi Claire,
    Love the illustrations lately too! 🙂 Have you been to Amitie fabrics yet in Centre rd Bentleigh? It’s an offshoot from Pathwork on Central Park (not sure if the split was amicable though!) anyway… WELL worth checking out… it’s got some really beautiful things. xx

  13. mmmm, that looks/sounds yummy!!

  14. Thank you! The Anzac recipe is just what I needed. My OH has been taking his lunch and pinched all our son’s biccies for his own lunchbox, so I was looking for something healthy for both of them. Anzacs are just the thing.

  15. l.franklin@ecu.edu.au says:

    hey claire – another one of those “long time listeners, first time callers”. 🙂 i’m over in melb in a few weeks time and was wondering if you have any suggestions for where i can buy great fabric. for clothes making, rather than crafts at this stage. i’m looking for something a bit different and perhaps vintage repros. if anyone can help out i’d be much appreciative. leisa

  16. Hi Leisa – to be honest I really don’t have a lot of tips for good fabric stores in Melbourne, especially for something like vintage repros. I haven’t had a lot of chance to explore. If you find anything out – please be sure to let me know too!

  17. Wow, cool blog. galing! I’ll link u up ha. 🙂

  18. I love the new Denyise Schmidt fabrics too. They’re wonderful to work with. I got a nice set of 18 fQ the other day – like candy on the sewing room table !

  19. Hi Claire, When I saw this post I felt I had to say “I love your illustrations.” I do. Can’t wait to see what you do with Denyse’s new fabric. Glad you girls enjoyed our little treats : )

  20. Thanks for the recipe!! I love the illustration, you look pretty in it!!

  21. Oooh, I’ve been drooling over that D.S. fabric for weeks, and I don’t even know how to quilt!

  22. These are tasty – I used dried cranberries. Thanks for the recipe!

  23. Ah, Anzac biscuits. Those pioneering women knew a thing or two.
    Had to say I love your illustrations to death. And feel terribly inadequate next to them, but too bad for me. They’re beautiful.

  24. teslaroo! I want to try the dried cranberries… I was going to this time, but didn’t have any on hand at the time. Did they work out well?

  25. They were very good, but then I love cranberries. They can be dry, so I soak’em in a dab of boiling water for about 10 min. My kids were loving these.

  26. I’m in Kansas(!) where there isn’t much golden syrup to be found, but we subbed corn syrup and it was just fine. I think you could use honey, also? Might want to google this.

  27. those biscuits looked so good that i made a batch last night, and OHMYGOODNESS- they taste even better than they looked! delicious! thanks for sharing the recipe, claire!
    and teslaroo, i used honey in mine and they came out just fine.