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Chocolate: Chocolate Chip Biscuits

These light-textured shortbread-like biscuits go down well with everyone from tinies through to nineties, probably because they are less solid and sickly than brownies and cookies (no, I’m sure yours aren’t sickly). The chocolate flavour comes principally from the cocoa powder, so it’s essential to use a top-quality brand. As for the chocolate, white looks and tastes good, but it doesn’t have to be white; and if you can get good chocolate chips, use them, but I always chip away at a bar.

Makes 30

165g unsalted butter, softened

75g caster sugar

200g self-raising flour

20g cocoa powder

120g white chocolate, cut into chips (or ready made choc chips)

Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/gas mark 3.

Cream the butter and sugar until pale and soft. Sieve in the flour and cocoa and work them in with a wooden spoon.

Once the mixture has started to come together in lumps/crumbs, add the choc chips and work them in until you have a rough dough. (If you are finding this hard work, put the basin in warm water, but don’t be tempted to add liquid to the mixture.)

Break off apricot-sized pieces of dough, roughly shape them and lightly press them on to baking sheets: pressing them with the back of a fork will give a nice ridged effect.

Bake in the oven for 12 minutes. Leave for a couple of minutes, then put on a wire rack to cool.

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