When the Northern Professor was in Exeter with the Martyrologist, they visited a Benedictine monastery which, like most such, had a little shop selling items made by Benedictines. Among the loot with which he returned was a bag of biscuits made by some French Benedictine nuns, which he liked so much we decided to try and make them. The first go was unsuccessful, the second worked like a charm — I realised, after the first lot, that the mixture must be cooked in a mould. I don’t have a tray with cute little oval moulds, which the good sisters must have been using, but I do have a couple of bun-tins for making the smaller sort of bun, which I use for my one annual go of mince pies. The result came out twice the size, but none the worse for that, in my opinion. Grease the tins, if they aren’t non-stick. Cream 4 oz. each of butter and caster-sugar till it is white. Weigh together 6 oz. ground almonds and 2 oz. flour, and mix in a teaspoon of baking powder. Add a teaspoon each of (real) bitter almond essence and (real) vanilla essence to the creamed butter and sugar, and beat them in. Add a beaten egg, then stir in the almonds and flour till it’s all mixed. Drop spoonsful of this stiff mixture into the bun tins, without worrying about trying to flatten it, it will sort itself out. Cook at 180 or so for not very long until golden brown, and leave to cool. The result may lack the odour of sanctity associable with the originals, but they smell as French as all get out, and they are very nice.