Us Brits think we do the biscuit pretty well but New Zealand have also got an impressive selection of teatime treats. I thought I would share some of these with you via a tea towel I found in the kitchen drawer of our bach.

Random, I know but there it is.

Ginger Crunch

The Ginger Crunch is a New Zealand speciality and one my husband’s favourite sweet treats. It has a baked ginger shortbread base and then a thick layer of ginger icing on top.

Afghan Biscuits

These chocolaty, coconutty biscuits made with cornflakes are nearly always found under glass on a café counter in New Zealand. The history of the Afghan biscuit is quite mysterious. Some say the texture of the biscuit is supposed to represent the geography of Afghanistan with the crushed cereal representing sand, and the coconut and walnuts representing mountains. Others claim that the name originated from Britain’s involvement in the Anglo-Afghan Wars which began in 1839 and were invented for wartime care packages, or to represent ‘eating’ the enemy. There are some who believe the walnut top is reminiscent of a traditional Afghan hat called a pakol. But no-one knows for sure. And although a cafe in Christchurch decided to rename them ‘1908’ biscuits to try and move away from the Afghan’s dubious past, the move hasn’t been adopted anywhere else in the country so far as I know.

Melting Moments

Definitely not the same as our Melting Moments which are made with oats, sometimes topped with a blob of jam. These are what people in the UK would know as Viennese Whirls.


It’s a Tunnock’s Teacake. No more to say, really.

ANZAC Biscuit

As the ‘latin’ name suggests, the Anzac biscuit is associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) established in the First World War. They’re made with rolled oats, flour, sugar, butter (or margarine), golden syrup, baking soda and sometimes desiccated coconut. Apparently, these biscuits were sent by wives and women’s groups to soldiers abroad because they kept so well during transportation.

Marshmallow Slice

Haven’t tried this one yet but damn it looks good!

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