Monday, September 24, 2007

Tim Hortons tea biscuits at home

I'm not trying to say that the Tim Hortons tea biscuits are particularly good. But, if you really must go to Tim Hortons, they're one of your few options if you're looking for something that isn't too sweet.

And I think I've found the recipe:

It's based on this recipe , but I made the following modifications/clarifications:
  • raisins soaked in hot water for about 10 minutes to puff them up
  • organic butter instead of "margarine or butter"
  • I rolled the dough thinner to make a smaller biscuit, and the cooking time was shorter -- about 10 minutes
  • I didn't brush the tops with butter after baking, which maintains the coarse, dry surface.

If you're looking for a Tim Hortons-style tea biscuit, the only critical change there is to not brush the tops with butter because, in fact, the Tim Hortons biscuit probably uses the cheapest ingredients possible -- you are not going to get organic butter or Fleur de Sel in a Tim Hortons tea biscuit!

Also, I'd add the following notes to the recipe:

  • as you are working with this as if it's a dough, as in breadmaking, keep an open canister of flour nearby so that you can dust the dough and dust your hands. The dough was very wet to begin with, and needed quite a bit of dusting, as well as some handling with re-floured hands
  • it says to "cut in" the butter until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs. I did this by hand and just scrunched everything together over and over again, rubbing it between my fingers, until it resembled fine breadcrumbs, and then did some light lifting and fluffing of it all (similar to what I see women do when they're putting the finishing "lifting" touches on their swank hairdo) so that it wasn't too compressed
  • instead of a "greased baking sheet", I used these really great reusable baking liners that my Great Aunt sent me from England. They look like some kind of Teflon-coated plastic -- almost like reusable parchment paper. I prepared it on a baking peel and slipped it right onto an oven rack. The idea here was to avoid burned bottoms on the biscuits. The bottoms didn't burn, but I don't know if the liner was essential to that result or not.

So, that's about all. Like I said, there's nothing special about Tim Hortons tea biscuits, but I couldn't help but notice the strong resemblance.

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Anonymous said...

I love Tim Horton raisin tea biscuits and was wondering if anyone knew how many calories are in one biscuit. If you buy them just after they are made, they are truly delicious.

mattbg said...

Tim Hortons posts their nutritional information for all of their product on their website:

This shows that the raisin tea biscuit has 290 calories and 10g of fat, which is more than most of their donuts (and 590mg sodium -- twice that of most of their donuts). I'm not too surprised, because that fluffy interior probably comes by way of egg and/or shortening.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much! My dad loves Timmi's biscuits and I've been trying to make it for him and couldn't quite get the right texture...
This recipe is exactly what I was looking for.
Thanks again from your neighbour in Norval (Caledon)

Anonymous said...

I love Tim Horton tea biscuits so I'd like to try this recipe. How many biscuits does the recipe make?

mattbg said...

I don't know how many it makes because it's been awhile... but the picture was taken after I'd followed the recipe so you'd get however many are in the picture :)