7 Delicious British Biscuits You'll Want to Dunk in a Cup of Tea
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A British biscuit isn't like an American one: it's drier, flatter, and crunchier, and generally eaten as a mid-morning, mid-afternoon, or post-dinner snack. The classic way to enjoy a biscuit in the U.K. is to dunk it in a cup of tea so that it softens and moistens deliciously – just don't leave it in too long, or it might disintegrate into a crumbly mush at the bottom of your cup.
With days and nights getting chillier, here are seven British biscuits that would definitely provide comfort served with a steaming mug!
1. Jammie Dodgers
First sold more than 60 years ago, the Jammie Dodger is a British childhood favorite. It's essentially a shortbread sandwich with a splat of jam – or jelly, to use the American term – squeezed into the middle. Traditionally, the jam is raspberry flavor, though lemon, toffee, orange, chocolate, and "berry blast" versions have also been sold in the past.
2. Chocolate Digestives
As its name suggests, the digestive biscuit was first developed by Scottish doctors in 1839 as a semi-sweet treat to aid digestion. The rather sweeter chocolate-topped version, which biscuit brand leaders McVitie's invented in 1925, has been hailed as a "British masterpiece" by Bill Bryson.
3. Party Rings
Introduced by Fox's Biscuits in 1983, Party Rings have since become a staple of children's birthday parties. Each circular biscuit is topped with either pink, purple, white, or beige icing, making them a pretty addition to any buffet table (as well as a tasty one).
4. Bourbon Biscuits
Created by London-based biscuit company Peek Freans in 1910, the Bourbon biscuit is now made by various manufacturers including all the leading U.K. supermarkets. It consists of two rectangular dark chocolate-flavored biscuits with a chocolate buttercream filling; it's an everyday treat that also feels kind of decadent.
5. Jaffa Cakes
Is the Jaffa Cake, well, a cake or a biscuit? This is a constant source of contention for Brits – not least because in the U.K., value added tax (VAT) is payable on chocolate-covered biscuits, but not on chocolate covered cakes. A 1991 tribunal ruled that their recipe – Genoise sponge topped with orange jam and chocolate - makes them a cake, much to the delight of manufacturers McVitie's. You'll definitely see Jaffa Cakes in the biscuit aisle, though, and they're often served with a cup of tea, so we're including them on this list.
6. Malted Milk Biscuits & Sports Biscuits
These dairy-filled biscuits are (unofficial) cousins: a typical malted milk biscuit is embossed with two milk churns and a cow, while sports biscuits tend to show figures engaged in various athletic pursuits. If you haven't managed to do any exercise on any given day, dunking a sports biscuit into your cuppa might just feel like a cheeky shortcut.
7. Hobnob Biscuit
Launched by McVitie's in 1985, the Hobnob biscuit is made from rolled oats, making it something of a cross between a digestive biscuit and a flapjack. The name comes from the colloquial term "hob nob," which means to socialize with someone in a somewhat fancy setting.
Have we missed out one of your favorite British biscuits?