Rosemary Shrager is one of those names that I know and one of those faces I recognise but I’m not really sure why. I know she is famous for her work in food rather than being a historian or a sports star or something, so the fact she has biscuits on a supermarket shelf makes sense but I still struggle to know exactly where she fits in. It is times like this that I turn to Google. Google tells me she “is an English chef, best known for being an haute cuisine teacher on the reality television programme Ladette to Lady, and as a judge on Soapstar Superchef.” which perhaps explains why I couldn’t quite place her. A bit more digging and I learnt she has published a stack of cook books, runs cookery schools, has worked with every chef worth knowing and in 2012 she appeared on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here. So all in all we can deduce she’s earnt her stripes and I can only apologise for not knowing more about Rosemary already.
I found Rosemary’s biscuits on the shelf of the best supermarket in the UK – Booths. Now it is possible that you may not have heard of Booths as they are a mini chain operating in the North of England, primarily in Cumbria, but also in Lancashire and slowly creeping into other counties as well. It is the nicest supermarket you will ever walk round and is ethically superior to all the others – even I dare say Waitrose. If you want to know more check out this article by Jay Rayner from OFM a few years back and if you are ever near a Booths just go in and then weep that there isn’t one on your doorstep.
Not only is Booths brilliant but so is the donation of 10% of the profits that Rosemary’s biscuits give to the Veterans’ Artisan Bakery – a charity that does therapeutic baking with ex-Servicemen struggling with post-traumatic stress amongst other things. It sounds to me like one of the nicest charities around. However after going all gooey over Booths and Rosemary’s charitable endeavours it was time to see if the biscuits actually tasted nice, so I made a pot Earl Grey and prepared to dunk.
The biscuits are oaty based and have a hint of the hobnob about them, although they are less dense than a hobnnob. I dipped one into my tea and took a bite and the packet doesn’t mislead as they are spicy. There’s an almighty ginger kick which provides heat, but this is tempered by a rich butteriness. There is also a satisfying crunch to the biscuit that comes from using raw cane sugar rather than finer caster sugar and it works wonderfully. I had to stop myself from working my way through the whole packet as I’d eaten two profiterole pots from Waitrose a couple of hours earlier and I thought I should give my arteries a fighting chance.
These are the best biscuit discovery I’ve made in a long long time and I can only pray that other supermarkets get wise to the charms of Booths and stock them or alternatively that Booths opens up a branch in spitting distance of Peckham.
Rosemary’s Spicy Ginger Biscuits 150g packet £1.99