Saturday, May 7, 2011

Afghan Cookies (Biscuits) Recipe

Afghan Cookies

The timing of this recipe is not intended to be related in any way to recent events (Osama Bin Laden getting caught), it is just sheer coincidence. I had been planning on making Afghan cookies for some time. The delay was due to my inability to take into possession one of the key ingredients, cornflakes. 

Afghan cookies are made with cornflakes and cocoa. You must wonder what the connection is between cornflakes, cocoa and Afghanistan. Corn and cocoa do not grow in Afghanistan and neither do these ingredients feature in Afghani cuisine. You are probably thinking that external influence or occupation resulted in cornflakes and cocoa being introduced into Afghani cuisine. Answer is no. Afghan cookies have nothing to do with Afghanistan, or any country near or related to Afghanistan. These cookies were born in New Zealand many decades ago. I tried to find out why it is called Afghan cookies but to no avail. Nobody seems to know, even wiki does not have the answers. 

Afghan cookies are chunky, crunchy and slightly crumbly. And just like ANZAC cookies which are also from New Zealand and Australia, Afghan cookies require just a handful of ingredients and are very easy to make.

The cookies on its own are not very sweet so the icing is definitely needed. In the recipe I have presented two options for the icing – a richer (original) version and a lighter alternative. I used the lighter alternative.

The recipe is from the Edmonds Cook Book available online at TVNZ

200g butter, at room temperature
½ cup sugar
1¼ cups flour
¼ cup cocoa
2 cups cornflakes
Walnuts, optional

Chocolate Icing (richer version)
200g dark chocolate
½ cup cream
25g butter

Chocolate Icing (lighter alternative)
1 cup icing sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa
3 tablespoons water

1.      Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  
2.      Sift flour and cocoa and stir into creamed mixture. Fold in cornflakes.
3.      Place spoonfuls of the mixture onto a greased oven tray and press down lightly. 
4.      Bake at to 180°C/360°F for 15 minutes or until lightly browned and firm.
5.      When cookies have cooled, ice with chocolate icing and decorate with a walnut piece if you like
6.      To make the icing (richer version): break chocolate into top of a small bowl. Add butter and cream. Set over hot water and heat, stirring constantly, unit it has melted and smooth. Alternatively, microwave on medium power for 1-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds.
7.      To make the icing (lighter alternative): Mix all of the icing ingredients together in a bowl until a thick paste is formed.
Afghan cookies


  1. Ohhh .. I can imagine the crunchiness of it ... mmm! Would be great with a nice cup of coffee too!

  2. Lovely cookies! They look really delicious.



  3. Yum - I was born in NZ, so these bring back childhood memories. We would always put a walnut half on top of the chocolate icing - not sure why! Did you like them?

  4. Lou: yes I loved them. I ate them when I lived in NZ. I never figured out why walnut is placed on top, its a mystery just like the name of the biscuit.

  5. wow! I've always took cornflakes for granted! always thought that they existed everywhere...

  6. Lost my Edmonds Recipe Book some time ago, and am thrilled to find your Afghan Biscuit recipe. Also discovered Anzac biscuits - time to get baking! Love your site.


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