Okay, so not quite Nan’s Jam Drops, but second best….
Jam drops were one of the first things that I learned to cook, so they have a special place in my heart. The fact that Jam Drops and Rock Cakes were my Nan’s speciality makes them even more dear to me. I had not made Jam Drops for ages and when we had a visitor popping in for a cup of tea on Sunday, they seemed the perfect thing. Photo on Facebook got a huge response – especially about them being like Nan’s. So, perhaps Elsie’s Jam Drops were not world famous, but still pretty epic in our family!
These biscuits are pretty quick and easy to make, and perfect if you have a little helper in the kitchen – my boys used to love to make the hollows and filling with jam. Well, not TM. TM just spooned the jam straight into his mouth. A no-nonsense, cut out the middle-man sorta guy. Start by preheating your oven to 180°C and lining a couple of baking trays with baking paper.
In a bowl of a stand mixer, beat 125g softened butter with 1/3 cup of caster sugar and some vanilla. Can I just say, this is the big variation from Nan’s recipe. She used 1 cup of sugar (yikes!) and I found that even a half cup was too sweet. (Surprisingly, so did TM) With the jammy centres, these are sweet enough. Beat until light and creamy. Add an egg and beat until only just combined.
In a separate bowl, sift together a cup of self raising flour, 1/3 cup plain flour and 1/4 cup cornflour. This is also a deviation from Nan’s recipe (she used 2- 2 1/2 cups of SR flour) but the combination of flours gives a lovely slight crunch and avoid being too dry. With the mixer on low, add half the dry ingredients to the biscuit mixture. Add remaining and mix well. The mixture will still be a little sticky.
Roll teaspoonfuls of mixture into balls and place on your try, allowing room for spreading. Now press your thumb into the centre of the ball, making sure that you do not press all the way through. If you are fussy, you can use the end of a wooden spoon for a more precise hole. As I mentioned, this is a perfect job for a little helper. (Pause for a nostalgic sigh about missing having little helpers in the kitchen)
Place jam in the biscuit. Nan always used Plum Jam for Jam Drops, and I followed her lead here. Word of warning – do not use homemade jam, it is too runny.
And another piece of advice – be generous with your jam centre. Nothing worse than a Jam Drop with only a smear of jam across the top.
Pop into the oven for 10-15 minutes, until golden. Cool on trays for 10 minutes and then cool completely on wire racks.
I wish you could smell how scrumptious these are! Time to put the kettle on Polly and sample some of these Jam Drops before more visitors start arriving!
- 125g butter, softened
- ⅓ cup caster sugar
- ½ sp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 cup SR Flour
- ⅓ cup plain flour
- ¼ cup cornflour
- Approx ⅓ cup Jam
- Preheat oven to moderate and line trays with baking paper.
- Beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and creamy. Add egg and beat until just combined.
- Add half of dry sifted ingredients to mixture, then add remaining - mix well.
- Roll teaspoonfuls of mixture into balls and place on tray, allowing room for spreading. Push thumb into the centre to form a hollow. Place (about) ½ teaspoon of jam in each biscuit.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden. Stand on trays for 10 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack.