This simply will not do. The fact that a noble British tradition, one that encompasses all that is great about tea-breaks, one that has for quite literally generations brought some life to an otherwise dull elevenses or afternoon snack, one that even now, at three thirty on a Tuesday morning is helping me through the night, has gone undescribed, unrepresented, unenshrined, in a word unnoded in this great database is quite frankly compelling my hand to reach for the teapot as we speak!
It is not as if many words are necessary to describe this wonder of baked goods. A mere thirty are spent on their American cousin, the ginger snap - no doubt an excellent imitation even if their name rasps patronisingly descriptive on the sharp intellects of the intelligentsia who favour this confection with their coffee – but I am becoming distracted; let us prevaricate no longer.
Ginger nuts are quite simply magnificent biscuits. They are considerably harder than cookies or digestives, crumbling along their fault-lines only upon the exertion of a satisfyingly rigorous bite, and can be successfully dipped into your beverage of choice without fear of a catastrophic disintegration. Their flavour, however, is their major, primary and indeed first advantage over their lesser rivals. Utilising not only -as their name teasingly suggests – ginger, but also nutmeg and sugar, the immediately sweet sensation is reminiscent of Victorian luxury, of ships sailing from the Spice Islands baring exotic cargoes, of hot summer nights, or warm winters in front of a roaring fire. Finally, the flavours dwindle, revealing the secret of the ginger nut's success; a lingering spicy heat on the back of your tongue that refuses to be quenched except by allowing yourself another ginger nut.