Avid Baker’s Challenge: English Digestives

The May challenge at Avid Baker’s Challenge is the King Arthur Flour English Digestive biscuits.

These were super quick to knock together. The hardest part was waiting for the butter to come to room temperature. I also used this occasion to bust out my Queen Elizabeth silhouette cookie cutter that I bought from Fancy Flours. I was less successful with the thickness of the cookies. Some were closer to 1/4 inch than 1/8 inch. If I make these again I would stick to the thicker, 1/4 inch cookie. I didn’t quite get the baking time down pat either. Some were much crispier than others. I preferred the less crispy, thicker version. Overall they were good. A nice crumbly texture. I definitely think a cuppa would have improved them. I ate mine after it cooled without any liquid.


The recipe can be found here along with a picture of what traditional digestives should look like.

According to the King Arthur Flour website, “these biscuits were developed during the latter part of the 19th century to increase fiber in Victorian diets. Digestive Biscuits are really just sophisticated graham crackers and are very simple to make. They are delicious with tea and fruit.”

1/2 cup (2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) King Arthur Traditional Whole Wheat Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter at room temperature
3/4 cup (3 ounces) confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup (2 ounces) cold milk

Preheat your oven to 350°F.

Measure the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl. With a pastry blender, two knives, or your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour mixture. Toss in the sugar and enough milk to make a stiff dough.

Knead this mixture on a floured surface until smooth. (All this can be done almost instantly in a food processor.) Roll the dough out to a bit more than 1/8 inch thick and cut into any desired shape. Traditionally, digestive biscuits are round and about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Place on greased cookie sheets, prick evenly with a fork, and bake until pale gold, between 15 and 20 minutes.

Let me know if you try these out!

This entry was posted in Avid Baker's Challenge, Baking, English digestives, Fancy Flours, King Arthur Flour. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Avid Baker’s Challenge: English Digestives

  1. Varada says:

    It was really an easy cookie to put together. Nice job.

  2. Sunita says:

    Your cookie shape looks so beautiful. I preferred mine thicker too.

  3. chelly says:

    Love your cookie cutter! Very appropriate! 🙂 Nice job!

  4. Dos Gatos Baking says:

    Love the cookie cutter! And your cookies proved my suspicions, that the pricking isn’t really necessary to keep the cookies flat. (I had thought it was to enhance even baking, since it allowed air to get to the interior of the cookie, but I have no idea.)

    • There’s probably some really ridiculous reason for pricking the surface. I’m reminded of the old joke about the cook who always cut off both ends of her roast before putting in the pan because her mother did and when finally asked about it the mother stated that she did that because her pan was too small.

  5. Zosia says:

    Beautiful cookies! And I love your Queen Elizabeth cookie cutters! I liked them as well but mine didn’t have that nice crumbly texture….I’m going to blame the Canadian whole wheat flour I used rather than admit to the possibility I over-worked my dough in the food processor 😉

  6. Judy says:

    Great job!

Comments are closed.