Biscuits for Bartok 5 – Lunettes ( jammy dodgers?)

The ubiquitous and popular British biscuit the jammy dodger must surely have been inspired by the infinitely more decadent and elegant French ‘lunettes’. These traditionally oval-shaped sablé biscuits, two of which are sandwiched together, typically using raspberry jam, have with two distinctive jammy holes on top that give the traditional form its name. I read that these butter biscuits may originally date back to the Middle Ages in Italy where they were called ‘Milanais’

Despite my less traditional monocular jam aperture, round shape and un-fluted edge, these lunettes are a cut above the much-loved jammy dodger. The alluring sablé biscuit is similar to shortbread. The jam is ‘real’, although there appears to be some debate over whether seedless or seeded jams are preferable. I initially tried the recipe with seedless raspberry, but later used the same jam with seeds and found it to have much better depth of flavour and texture within – less runny too. Importantly for biscuit lovers, they are substantially bigger than our jammy dodgers, with a film of icing sugar dusted over to give their otherwise demure appearance an irresistible appeal (as if one would need much encouragement to eat these beauties).

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Although I have got into the rhythm of ensuring the musicians are supplied with biscuits on a weekly basis, my offerings are lagging behind in posts due to my other commitments. I have actually made seven offerings in this series of 10 biscuit-making recipes, alas, my drafts continue to accumulate. These include my posts about the recent Old Spot butchery, sausage and bacon production and an associated new gadget purchase – all to be accompanied with my inevitable butchery musical sound track.  Hope to cover this soon for discerning carnivores (and any fans of extreme music…).

To add to the malaise, sadly, I have had some food photography disasters of late.  The quality of the photographs of some of the dishes has been so poor (even for me) that they did not do the food justice and I could not possibly include the images in posts.  Unfortunately, this included a pretty splendid vegetarian Mexican banquet and a colourful and enticing dish of home made tagliatelle with mussels, fennel and parmesan. Never mind, onwards and upwards, good tasting food is paramount!

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Lunettes

This recipe is courtesy of Annie Bell. It makes about 14 lunettes. The biscuits can be made a few days in advance and sandwiched together with your jam of choice just before serving.  I prefer raspberry, The Man Named Sous, strawberry jam, but any jam could be used, depending on what floats your boat at the time – or what you have in the store cupboard.  I’m hopeful my raspberry crop will yield enough for my own jam this year.  Fingers crossed.

Ingredients

220g unsalted butter

120g icing sugar

zest of 1 lemon

2 medium egg yolks

300g plain flour

100g of jam of your choice

Method

  • Cream the butter and sugar together in a food processor or food mixer, add the lemon zest, the egg yolks then flour to form a sticky dough.
  • Wrap in cling film, flatten into a block and chill for a few hours or overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 160C and cover 2 baking sheets in silicone sheeting or parchment paper.
  • Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 5 mm. Use an 8 cm cutter to make the biscuits and cut out a hole 2 cm wide with a cutter from the centre of half of them.
  • Place on the baking sheets slightly apart and bake for 10-12 minutes until just starting to colour.
  • Use a palette knife to loosen them, place on a baking tray and allow to cool.
  • Dust the tops with the holes in icing sugar, spread about 3/4 teaspoon of jam in the centre of the bottom biscuit and place the sugar-coated half on top.

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44 thoughts on “Biscuits for Bartok 5 – Lunettes ( jammy dodgers?)

      • I don’t think those outside the UK get the Jammy Dodger reference Tracey. ‘Lunettes’ is French for spectacles; is it because of the opening to see the jam do you think? Regards, Pete.

      • Yes Pete, traditionally the two jam apertures are named after specs. The monocular version I make isn’t so trad, but I have a limited range of cutters for the oval shape too. Re-Jammy Dodgers, you are right, they are quintessentially British – and Burton’s commercial effort. I haven’t alluded to that for the benefit of overseas readers, same happened with Maltesers! Maybe I should spell it like Burton’s too – Jammie 🙂 Thanks, T

  1. You may find this hard to believe but, my eldest is making this exact Annie Bell recipe as I type. She has made it a few times before and the end result is delicious light biscuits.
    Best,
    Conor

  2. Fantastic biscuits, I’ll pass this one to Gosia; looking forward to the Old Spot post, not to mention the music:) Asking mum in law for authentic Polish bread recipe this weekend:)

  3. These are gorgeous. We sometimes call these Linzer tarts, unless they’re different, but similar. I can’t believe they’re easy to make and yet….! Thank you!

  4. Oh you’ve done it again. These are my all time favourite biscuits. Thanks for the recipe, they look really tasty. Childhood memories come flooding back.

    • Thanks Iain, though my childhood is more associated with the commercial product, but these are so soft and buttery with real jam, hard to beat. I still have a soft spot for the synthetic Burton’s biscuits though – must be nostalgia 🙂

  5. Wonderful. My family used to call me the Jammy Dodger as a small child because my face was always covered in jam from these. The photos are great too, I feel your pain about the photography disasters, having a point and click means half the food I make never ends up on my blog.

    • 🙂 I got covered in jam dripping out of these! Thank you. it is not often I receive a complement for photos, so much appreciated! At least I have moved from my phone to point and shoot camera, but my images are not much better! I just can’t get passionate about photography, it’s all about the food, although I know it will limit the appeal of my blog – so many bloggers love good aesthetics. Oh well, will keep trying! thanks for commenting, Tracey

      • I have the exact same problem, especially living in Denmark where it is dark so much of the time. Thank god for spring and the chance to finally have some good natural light. I think blogs should be about writing more than photos, but a lot of people don’t seem to agree unfortunately.

      • Couldn’t agree more about natural light – gives us a fighting chance, also about content, but I’d still rather work towards good content than just good photos. Both would be ideal! Thanks, Tracey

  6. Pingback: Versatile Blogger Award | The Peckish Kiwi

  7. I’ve never heard of jammy dodgers, you learn something new everyday! Speaking of food photography, your jammy monocles photos are very tempting! And I still haven’t figured out how to take a decent photo at a dinner party, even though that’s when I put more effort into the food. Oh well.

    • Thank you. Glad to know I am not alone with photo issues – although I struggle enough with single dishes and the one Mexican dinner party banquet I tried to photograph was disastrous – and agree, always when we are putting most effort in. As long as it tastes good, and looks good for your guests, that’s the main thing 🙂

  8. Shame about the vegetarian mexican banquet photo….. sounds amazing. Perhaps a good thing though as the biscuits have gone straight to my hips just by looking at those glorious pics!

  9. Thank you, yes, will just have to try harder with the photos next time I make Mexican! I’m sure these biscuits are entirely designed to go on hips, the amount of butter they contain. Oh well, an extra mile or two of running might help, except I’m falling behind with that due to the garden 😉

  10. I agree that these are a slight improvement over the Jammy Dodgers, but I’d happily “jam” either one into my face 🙂 These looks simply gorgeous.

    And I understand the problem of photos that don’t live up to your expectations. I’m now taking a photography class, and, suddenly I feel the need to go back and redo most of my photos! But yours always look terrific.

    • Thanks, that’s the best complement I’ve had all week, as I do struggle with photos, though these worked out better than most – and they didn’t taste too bad either:) Hope your photography class helps, I should be inspired to try harder! Thanks.

  11. I knew I’d get to the biscuits eventually! It’s raspberry for me (unless I had some of the wild ‘fragi’ from Romania I wrote a post about some time ago – though you told me you had them up there too).

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