Savory Biscuits

A photo of some of the girls in the ballet.

When my famous friend, Marieke, the Dutch ex-prima ballerina and current ballet teacher, asked me to make savory biscuits for her annual Ballet Show, I immediately said YES. Being in charge of the nibbles means I get to stand behind the bar with the food and drink at my fingertips – a slice of heaven.

I had been to Guy and Andrew’s Vernissage ( that same afternoon, something which I mentioned to you in my previous post “Curry Buffet Part 2” (and if you haven’t read it, why not?!), so I was very hot and rushed, but the ballet performance was worth all the running about.

It was very well attended and was superb. I sat at the back with Leon, Marieke’s husband, and their son, Louis – someone had to keep an eye on the men, I mean the food. Florian came and joined us on the table for a moment before it decided to join the Land of Broken Tables. This, of course, had nothing to do with my feather weight… Fortunately it was at a musically loud moment so we didn’t disrupt the show (and I didn’t crash to the floor which would have been a real show stopper).

A photo of Marieke and Louis.

I had never been to a ballet performance until I met Marieke, but now I wait anxiously every year for the performance. The first time I went 2 years ago, she had choreographed the dancing to Spanish music and we were on the edge of our seats for the entire performance.

A photo of children in the ballet.

This year was completely different but equally good. The children hopped onto the stage to German music and there was also Bach in Africa and all types of interesting music and dancing. The dancers ranged in age from 3 to 63, and they were all great. Marieke danced as well and was magnificent – if you would like to see more of her incredible talent (and beauty!) then go to her website and be enamoured ( There are also more (and way better) photos of the show on her site. My camera technique leaves a lot to be desired…

A photo of children doing ballet.

But therefore I can (just about) make biscuits! Here are the recipes for the biscuits I made for the ballet.

One more quick interruption of myself – today is the 1st of September (even if I post this later due to broad band troubles, growl) which is meteorologically the first day of autumn or summer depending on your hemisphere. So enjoy the leaves falling or the flowers blossoming.

A photo of onion biscuits.

(Makes at least 100)

These are great served with aperitifs or actually anytime of the day. They kept for a week in an airtight container – maybe they would have lasted longer, but I didn’t afford them that possibility! They are soft and tasty. This makes quite a lot, but the quantities are easily halved.

You can use less onion soup powder – this is the size of the packet in France, but again, you could easily halve the quantity as they have a strong oniony flavor. Quite delicious.

750ml / 3 cups flour
91g pkt onion soup powder
1 level tsp paprika
226g / 2 sticks butter or margarine
100g grated cheese, plus more to sprinkle

1. Mix dry ingredients together and then cut in the butter and mix in the cheese. Work it all together to form a pliable dough and then roll out to about a 3mm thickness. Cut out your desired shapes and bake for 10 minutes at 180C / 375F. Easy and delicious!

A photo of oat biscuits.

(Makes at least 50)

If you like oat biscuits, you’ll love these. Oat biscuits can be a bit bland (in my opinion), but my Scottish friend, Sam, says that Scots love oat biscuits and she liked them. At the ballet, they all went, so they couldn’t have been too bad!

I did lose the pepper pot in my batch (oops) so make sure you use only a pinch or a sprinkle as mine were hot, hot, hot!!! Unless you want people to drink a lot, go easy on the pepper.

Due to the large amount of pepper in mine, they have not been eaten with quite the same relish as the onion biscuits and have lasted several weeks in an airtight container on top of the fridge…

Gomasio is a Japanese condiment often used with rice dishes and as a flavor enhancer in the Macrobiotic diet. It is a mix of salt and sesame seeds, about 1 part salt and 9 parts sesame seeds. This can be adjusted as per your taste and desired level of salt intake.

To serve, I put a tiny smear of butter on each biscuit and topped them with a sliver of cheese (the butter keeps the cheese in place). This worked really well.

500g oats / oatmeal
6 level tsp Gomasio or 1 tsp salt and 5 tsp sesame seeds
1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of pepper, optional
2 tbsp butter
300ml / 1 ¼ cups hot water
50g / 2oz raisins or other chopped dried fruit
Optional extras: 1 level tsp dried herbs like rosemary, oregano, thyme

1. Mix together the oats, gomasio, bicarb and pepper. Combine the hot water and butter and add to the dry ingredients. It may seem a little wet at first, but the oats will eventually absorb all the liquid.

2. Once all the liquid has been absorbed, sprinkle some oatmeal onto the counter and roll out the dough to about 4mm thickness. (The dough is quite heavy to work with.) Cut out rounds or use your favorite shapes.

3. Bake for about 20 minutes at 180C / 375F. Turn them over a couple of times during the cooking process as they may otherwise be wet and heavy. They will be dry and crisp when cooked. These keep very well in an airtight container.

Share this
Post new comment
The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <img> <div>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • You may use [inline:xx] tags to display uploaded files or images inline.

More information about formatting options