Anzac Day is tomorrow (25 April) and is probably Australia’s most important national day.
It’s the day we Aussies honour those who have served Australia in the many conflicts Australia has participated in, and especially those who lost their lives. It’s a day for serious reflection. Just about everything is closed until 1pm (even more than on Good Friday or Christmas day). Dawn services and marches are held all over Australia, and it’s traditional to play two up.
Encouragingly, crowds seem bigger each year, even though there is only one Digger from WW1 still alive (I think) and those from WW2 are fewer and fewer. Many of the marchers will be descendants of those who served. I have never been to a march but N and I were in Auckland, New Zealand on Anzac Day in 2003 and we caught the end of the ceremony at the Museum there, and it was moving. In 2006 as part of our bigger-than-Ben-Hur European trip, we sailed through the Dardanelles on our cruise and it was amazing to think that the Anzacs had landed somewhere on the coast to our right. We couldn’t see where Gallipoli (Gelibolu) was – the coastline seemed pretty empty from the distance we were. N had studied the Gallipoli campaign in history that year so it was really meaningful for her. Gallipoli was where the Anzac legend was born.
Great article here.
In honour of the occasion, let me offer you a recipe for Anzac biscuits (cookies). These biscuits are a traditional and popular Australian biscuit – and easy to make. This recipe is from the Australian Women’s Weekly sweet old-fashioned favourites cookbook. We are planning to make a trip to Jenolan Caves, and I plan to bake some biscuits to take with us to munch in the car. (It’s a 3 hour trip.)
1 cup rolled oats (NOT quick cook oats)
1 cup plain flour (NOT self-rising) (I, of course, use spelt flour)
1 cup sugar (white or half white, half brown)
3/4 cup desiccated coconut
4 oz / 125g butter
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2 tablespoons boiling water
Combine oats, sifted flour, sugar and coconut in a large bowl. In a saucepan, melt butter and golden syrup over a gentle heat. Mix bicarb soda with boiling water, add to melted butter mixture and add this to the dry ingredients. Stir until combined.
Take teaspoonfuls of mixture and place on a lightly greased oven tray; allow room for spreading. Cook in a slow oven 160degC / 325degF for 20 minutes. Loosen while warm, then cool on trays. If you leave them a little longer, they’ll be crisper (but they’re nice chewy too). Makes about 35.
You can replace half the white flour with wholemeal.
You can add some spices; mixed spice, or ginger.
You can add a little wheatgerm or bran to the dry ingredients.
You can replace the golden syrup with honey.
Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.