Shrewsbury biscuits are light, hard, crisp cookies.
They are made from butter, eggs, flour, spices and rosewater. Some variants add sherry and / or currants.
The dough is rolled out thinly, cut into shapes, pricked with a fork, and baked.
Shrewsbury biscuits are light brown when cooked.
Store Shrewsbury biscuits in an airtight container to keep them crisp.
Shrewsbury Biscuits originated in Shrewsbury, England. A man named Mr Palin became famous for the version he started making in 1819.
They used to be made much harder and crispier than they are now.
Literature & Lore
“To make Shrewsbury Cakes: — Take to one pound of sugar, three pounds of the finest flour, a nutmeg grated, some beaten cinamon (sic); the sugar and spice must be sifted into the flour, and wet it with three eggs, and as much melted butter, as will make it of a good thickness to roll into a paste; mould it well and roll it, and cut it into what shape you please. Perfume them, and prick them before they go into the oven.” — William Carew Hazlitt (1834 to 1913). Old Cookery Books and Ancient Cuisine. London: The Book-Lover’s Library. 1902.