Scotch Finger Lemon Butter

June 15, 2017 at 13:09 | Posted in bicycles | Leave a comment
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Lemons are pretty awesome, when you think about it. They can enhance just about any style of cooking or eating – whether desert, main course or drink. They can lift a roast chicken, give zing to a meringue pie or complete a gin and tonic. Yes, I’m a fan of lemons.

Arnott’s have some form with lemons too. The Lemon Crisp is a god among biscuits. It is transcendent. If you’ve never tried one, go and buy some right now. They are addictive.

Funnily enough, there is a link between the Scotch Finger and the Lemon Crisp. When I reviewed the last ‘Twisted Fave’ Scotch Finger, the one with choc chips in it, I noted at the end of the review that they were good, but ‘nowhere near Lemon Crisp territory’. Did some Arnott’s employee read this, and did this create a subliminal link in their mind between Scotch Fingers and lemons, leading directly to this new variety?

Yes, it did. It surely did. It’s surely thanks to me that we have these biscuits.

And you can thank me effusively, because these are good. I really wasn’t sure how they were going to be; on the surface it seems kind of like an odd combo. But they work brilliantly. The lemon is, well, lemony; the bright flavour adding lifted notes to the rich biscuit. It’s like a rich lemon cheescake. I’m going to give these an eight out of ten. Good show, Arnott’s. Oh, and feel free to send me a few cases by way of thanks for the inspiration…


Choc Chip Scotch Finger

November 5, 2015 at 12:45 | Posted in biscuits | Leave a comment
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choc chip scotch finger packFor the most part, I avoid the whole internet slang and emoticons shtick, but just occasionally I see something for which they just seem perfectly apt. Which is why, when I saw Choc Chip Scotch Fingers for the first time, my reaction was simple.


It’s all just so obvious, but so inspired. ‘Twisted’ indeed.

These biscuits, I felt, could be dangerous. You just say the words ‘Scotch Finger’ and ‘Chocolate Chips’ in the same sentence, and it begins. you just want some. You just want some really really badly. Before you’ve even tried them, you need more of them.

choc chip scotch finger biscuitI was trembling with excitement as I opened the packet. Here they were.

My first thought was actually that they don’t look very attractive. Kind of blotchy and a bit odd. Something to do with embossed lettering and choc chips, I think. Oh well, never mind that, let’s press on with the devouring.

And devour them I did. the whole packet was gone in a matter of minutes. They really are pretty good.

But but but. Note quite as good as I hoped. Somehow they just don’t quite hit the mark. Possibly a tough gig, given the high expectations. But the chocolate just wasn’t pronounced enough. They need larger chocolate chunks, I think. Not necessarily more chocolate, but fewer, bigger pieces (This is a problem I’ve had before; Arnott’s seem to struggle with larger-than-normal chocolate chips. Perhaps they could upgrade their chocolate-chip machine?). Overall, I’d probably say the Chocolate Coated Scotch Finger is actually better.

All of this is, on reflection, perhaps a good thing. Perhaps Arnott’s deliberately restrained themselves when creating these, knowing just how dangerous they could be in the wrong hands.

I’m going to give these a seven-and-a-half out of ten. They are good. But nowhere near Lemon Crisp territory.

Christmas Biscuits

January 8, 2011 at 13:16 | Posted in biscuits | Leave a comment
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I finally got around to eating some of the biscuits I got for Christmas.

Arnott’s do a range of seasonal packaging for the festive period, and this year I was lucky enough to score this handsome porcelain jar. It contains several individual packets of the Scotch Finger / Nice combination, so as well as getting a nice jar you can also pretend you are staying in a hotel by putting a packet by the side of your bed each night.

The main label around the jar is simply a paper wrapper, so this can be removed, which I’m sure will make the jar even more attractive. I would say that I will then use it to store my unfinished packets of biscuits in, but having an unfinished packet of biscuits is such a rarity I doubt it will get used much.

The other biscuit I got was a packet of Tim Tam Fingers. These are the same as Tim Tam Originals, but made long and thin and sold in a snack pack containing two fingers. Sometimes a change in form factor can make a biscuit taste different; something to do with varying proportions of chocolate coating and the like. However, in this case I can report that Tim Tam Fingers taste exactly like Tim Tam Originals.

For a moment I did entertain the thought that the ‘Tim Tam Slam’ would be considerably more difficult given the extra length of these biscuits, and was tempted to give it a try. However, I actually think that the Tim Tam Slam is a waste of both good tea and a good biscuit, so I decided against it. Perhaps someone who has tried it could share their experiences via the ‘comments’ section below.


Chocolate Scotch Fingers

April 10, 2010 at 19:21 | Posted in biscuits | 2 Comments
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It has been said by many people that you can improve anything by covering it with chocolate. Actually, I’m not sure it has been said by many people, but it might have been.

Arnott’s perhaps agree, as they took it upon themselves to take the classic Scotch Finger and add a milk chocolate coating. Is this an improvement? Or gilding the lily?

Firstly, it is worth saying that Arnott’s do use high quality chocolate in their biscuits. According to their website, they make it themselves to their own high quality standards, and clearly the effort they put into it is worthwhile.

The chocolate coating on these biscuits is not especially thick, but is not stingy either; the coating has an attractive lattice pattern where it has been poured, and the coating extends part-way down the side of the biscuit.

And. interestingly, it completely changes the character of the biscuit. The malty character of the plain version is replaced with a harmonious mixture of rich milk chocolate and shortbread; the effect is not unlike the last few mouthfuls of a chocolate ice-cream when you crunch up the cone with the remaining ice-cream.

It is good. Very good, in fact. Arnott’s don’t make a dark chocolate version of this, and normally I find dark chocolate biscuits more satisfying. However, in this case I think the milk chocolate works well; it complements the biscuits rather well; and as the Scotch Finger is not too sweet to begin with it can take the sweeter chocolate with aplomb.

The Chocolate Scotch Finger is never going to supplant the original classic. However, as an occasional treat they are very rewarding. I’d give them eight out of ten. Delicious.

Scotch Fingers

February 6, 2010 at 14:46 | Posted in biscuits | 4 Comments
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The Scotch Finger is one of the mainstays of Arnott’s range. As well as being available in two different packet sizes (250g and 375g) and as a chocolate coated variant, they appear in several of Arnott’s assortments as well as in those individually wrapped packs you find in hotel rooms (sometimes paired with a much less exciting ‘nice’ biscuit, which brings about all sorts of dilemmas about which to eat first). They even, I am reliable informed, turn up in Australian Army ration packs. The Scotch Finger therefore has deep roots into the Australian psyche.

As the name implies, they are a shortbread-style biscuit made with butter (although they also contain vegetable oil). Each biscuit is divided into two fingers, and the two halves can be snapped apart. It is very unusual to do this, however – in fact, I’ve never seen an Australian eat a Scotch Finger in this way. I have found that, by breaking them into individual fingers, they can be used as a kind of edible spoon for consuming little pots of fruit yoghurt; the combination of biscuit and yoghurt leads to a rather pleasant ‘cheesecake-like’ flavour and texture.

Each biscuit is around 75mm long and 43mm wide, and a whopping 10mm deep to its highest protuberances. They have a kind of zig-zag pattern at the edges, and the words ‘ARNOTT SCOTCH’ imprinted on the textured upper; clearly there was no room for ‘FINGER’. There are 14 biscuits in a 250g packet; for another bonus point and a chance to win a packet of these biscuits answer this question: How many Scotch Finger biscuits are there in a 375g packet?

The Scotch Finger is somewhat different to a Scottish Shortbread biscuit. It is a bit less ‘short’, and has a distinct malty flavour particularly on the aftertaste; the butter is less evident the you might expect. The flavour is actually rather similar to an English ‘Malted Milk’ biscuit (although not at all close to the Arnott’s ‘Malt’o’milk’ variety). The Scotch Finger is also excellent for dunking; it holds up well in hot tea and the flavours blend well.

I have to say, I think this is a fantastic biscuit. It’s not fancy, has no cream or chocolate, but this unassuming biscuit is a true friend. It’s posh enough to serve to guests without embarrassment, makes a lovely snack with a cup of tea and, if push comes to shove, the 250g packet makes an excellent meal-substitute (there have been a few occasions when on my own in the evening that I have sat down to dine on a packet of Scotch Fingers). I would actually say that, if there were some sort of totalitarian regime change in Australia, and we were each to be restricted to only one type of biscuit for ever more, the Arnott’s Scotch Finger would probably be the one I would choose. (This scenario is, I think, rather unlikely; such a totalitarian regime would probably be bent on imposing the same biscuit on everyone, rather than allowing individual choice. Almost certainly they would impose the ‘nice’ biscuit on us all, whilst reserving chocolate-coated Scotch Fingers for the regime leaders. Such is the way of dictators.)

Notwithstanding their undoubted qualities, there are two faults which can affect Scotch Fingers. This is quite unusual, as Arnott’s generally have excellent quality control. The first is caused by rough handling, and leads to a significant build-up of tiny crumbs inside the packet. You can often tell when this has occurred, as  the pack appears less smooth (the pictured packet shows this to some degree, although thankfully the biscuits reviewed were OK), and you can hear the crumbs moving when you up-end the packet. (This isn’t Arnott’s fault, I suppose, but they could consider protecting the biscuits in a plastic sleeve as they do with other delicate lines.) Whilst this doesn’t affect the biscuits markedly, it is rather annoying as they do get rather covered in fine crumbs which go everywhere. And it is quite disastrous when dunking; you can expect rapid sludge build-up from such a packet.

The second problem is rarer, but more fundamental. Sometimes you get a packet of Scotch Fingers that appear to have been in the oven a bit too long. The give-away sign is on the zig-zag edges of the biscuit; they appear much darker than the rest of the biscuit, although the whole biscuit takes on a darker hue. This can affect the taste somewhat, and give a slight ‘burnt cooking oil’ taste to the biscuit. It’s not common, but it happens sometimes. For a company that generally shows such excellent quality control, this is strange to see on such a common variety. Perhaps the sheer number of these being produced makes it hard to spot such problems.

Still, don’t let that put you off. The Scotch Finger is an excellent biscuit, worthy of its place in Australian hearts.

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