Galletas Marías, aka Marie Biscuits, are a plain cookie, similar in taste to animal crackers, and are round with a border around the edge. The word “Maria” or “Marie” is imprinted in the centre.
The cookies started as a Peek Freans cookie.
On 23 January 1874, Queen Victoria’s second son, Alfred, married the Russian Grand Duchess Marie Alexandrovna Romanova. In 1875, Peek and Frean released a biscuit to honour this, naming it after Marie. They imprinted the name Marie right on the cookie, and in a nod to architectural styling at the time, put a beaded border on the cookie’s edges. They also had docker holes in them.
The cookie became very popular throughout Europe, particularly in Spain, and then in Mexico.
There are now many brands of Marie Biscuits (any trademark on them seems to have vanished over the years), but almost all retain Marie’s name on them (as Marie or Maria), the border, and the docker holes. A popular brand in Mexico is Gamesa.
Adults dunk them in coffee or tea; for infants and children, they are dipped in milk.
Marie Biscuits can be crumbled up and used for pie crusts, as North Americans would graham wafer crumbs and Brits would digestives.