Garibaldi Biscuits

I was browsing the cookbook shelves of a large department store not so long ago and I came across The Australian Women’s Weekly’s latest contribution - The Country Collection.  It is a beautifully photographed book with a lovely baking section.  There are lots of recipes for the types of biscuits and cakes I remember eating as a child.  It wasn’t particularly expensive and, before I knew it, I was at the cash register:  cha-ching and it was mine.

Another thing I noticed about the book is that it includes the Corn and Ricotta Cake with Roasted Tomatoes and Pesto recipe that I posted not so long ago.  I found the recipe in Australian Delicious magazine, February 2010.  Makes you wonder.  It is not the first time I have found exactly the same recipes in a cooking magazine and a cookbook … mmmm …

Anyway, one of the recipes in my new purchase was this Garibaldi biscuit recipe.  I never knew they were called Garibaldi biscuits: we always called them currant slice.

I thought mine were a bit dry.  I cooked them for 25 minutes as per the recipe; maybe a bit less would be better.

Maus liked them (she didn’t think they were dry, at all).  The biscuit barrel was full one minute and empty the next.  In her defence, the recipe didn’t make many.  You may want to double it.

  • 110g dried currants
  • 2 tbs* brandy
  • 225g plain flour
  • 55g caster sugar
  • 80g cold unsalted butter, chopped
  • ⅓ cup milk (approx)
  • 55g caster sugar, extra
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

*These are 20mls tablespoons.

  1. Combine currants and brandy in a small bowl then set aside for, at least, 30 minutes.
  2. Put the flour and caster sugar into food processor bowl and pulse it a couple of times.
  3. Add the butter, whizz until the mixture is crumbly.
  4. Pour milk through the shoot whilst the processor is running until the mixture begins to come together.
  5. Pour dough onto bench top and knead into a ball.  If it is too dry, add a drop or 2 more milk.
  6. Wrap in plastic wrap.  Set aside in the fridge for, at least, 30 minutes.
    Of course, you could do this by hand, as the recipe suggests, but why would you if you have a food processor?
  7. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  8. Combine extra caster sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  9. Drain currants – discard brandy.
  10. Weigh dough and divide into two halves.
  11. Roll one half into 20cm x 30cm rectangle on a piece of baking paper.  Use a ruler or something with a flat edge to nudge it into shape because you want a neat rectangle.
  12. Sprinkle dough with 2tbs* of cinnamon sugar and the currants.
  13. Roll remaining dough into a 20cm x 30 cm rectangle on baking paper. Place on top of the other piece of dough.
  14. Using a rolling-pin, roll slice until about 5mls thick.
  15. Peel top piece of baking paper off and lift up the slice with bottom piece of the baking paper and place slice on baking tray.
  16. Mark with a knife into 16 (or more) rectangles.
  17. Brush with egg and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon sugar.
  18. Bake for 25 minutes (or, maybe, a bit less).
  19. Stand for 5 minutes then, using a sharp knife, cut into biscuits along marked lines.

8 thoughts on “Garibaldi Biscuits

  1. Hi. 3 things this time! 1) Sally Wise lives up to her name. One of her cookbooks has a great, very easy recipe for Mandarin Jam. Great for using up early windfall fruit.
    2) I’ve just rediscovered Corned beef (silverside) too. I use a recipe from David Herberts “Complete Perfect Recipes” & they are, perfect. His secret ingredient is 1/2 star anise.
    3) Garibaldi biscuits! I have a recipe from an Italian cookbook that says, ” these are eaten all over Italy. They are blissfully straightforward to make & children love them.” We love them & they evoke memories of the old Australian version, currant slices.

    • Hi Carolyn. Thanks for taking the time to comment. I also have Sally Wise’ book A year in a Bottle I will see if the mandarin jam recipe is in there. Thanks for the heads up.
      I don’t have David Herbert’s book. I have just checked it out, it looks good. It had been such a long time since I’d had corned beef and Sally’s recipe was very nice.
      It is funny, I have never seen a recipe for Garibaldi biscuits. I have just checked out several of my Italian cookbooks, none of them contain the recipe. Is your Italian recipe similar? I used to love currant slice as a kid. You don’t see them sold commercially any more. I bet it is because they have to use real currants (as compared to imitation cream and pretend jam) and currants cost money.

  2. These are one of my childhood memories, sadly no longer made commercially here – but your recipe has made me happy, and I will surely try these – are raisins and currants the same thing? In the US, raisins are larger than currants, but they come from two different plants.

    • Hi Doc. In Australia, currants are produced from the Zante (Black Corinth) and Carina grapes. Raisins are produced from the Muscat, Gordo Blanco or Waltham Cross grapes. Yep, currants are small and raisins are big. I am happy I made you happy:) Thanks for telling me that.

      • OK, our commercial currants are ‘Zante’s’ also – our big raisins are made from Thompson grapes, mostly. But it’s confusing for us gardeners, ’cause there is a family of shrubs called ‘currants’ (red and black) which produce an edible fruit, but I don’t think those are ever dried – at least I’m not aware of it if they are. All very confusing to me.

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