Monday, February 9, 2015

Biscuit Samprit / Biskut Ceri / Nyonya cherry cookies

Biscuit Samprit is my favourite cookies that I used to eat for Chinese New Year.

Back in the days, my grandmother and I didn't bake our own biscuit samprit as we bought ours mainly from a skillful neighbour who sold us tins of these biscuits stored in recycled Milo or Horlicks tins. At that time, my grandmother knows that I really love these cookies. For every Chinese new year, she ordered four large tins of cookies just for me and two for the visitors and the rest of the family. See! It is always the fatty me that get the most attention and priority.

Sadly, my always-loving-me grandmother is gone and there is also no more skillful biscuit samprit baking neighbour to sell me these cookies. Obviously, if I want to eat these cookies now, I have to bake them myself. hmmm...

Thanks to my friend, Joyce (Kitchen Flavours) who shared with us her wonderful biscuit samprit recipe!

Joyce is right... Back in the days when I ate tins and tins of these cookies, these cookies were baked with margarine, particularly Planta margarine or any of the kind that can stored well in room temperature. Now, I'm baking mine with the best quality butter for its beautiful buttery fragrance and lesser trans fat content.

For Little Thumbs Up (Cocoa event), I have also baked chocolate biscuit samprit by adding cocoa powder instead of custard powder and my son reckon that these chocolate biscuit samprit is one of his favourite cookies :)

With the right amount of icing sugar added, these traditional Chinese new year cookies are not too sweet. In fact, just right for us! Plus, the biscuit dough is also easy to handle and so they won't expand like crazy after baking. However due to their stability, both chocolate and custard dough are the firm kinds and I can't use a cookie press to pipe or shape these cookies. To shape, I have to use my thumb to push the dough through a star shaped nozzle and it can be quite painful after too much of pressing... Ouch!!!

Never mind, the pain is gone when I enjoyed these biscuits after baking...

Update on 19 Jan 2017: I have three really good melt-in-you-mouth Biscuit Samprit / Biskut Ceri cookies to share at here.

Biscuit Samprit Biskut Ceri Nyonya Cherry Cookies
Biscuit Samprit / Biskut Ceri / Nyonya Cherry Cookies
Made two kinds of these cookies. One is the traditional with custard powder and another with cocoa powder.
Instead of margarine, I have used soften butter to bake these cookies.
Then, mix in these ingredients.
The chocolate dough is slightly drier than the custard one...
... but both are firm and can't use a cookie press to pipe or shape them.
Decorate the cookies with chopped pieces of glaze cherries - This is a must for a classic Biscuit Samprit!
Our custard biscuit samprit
Our chocolate biscuit samprit - Notice that this dough is slightly harder to press?
Buttery and yummy!
A little drier? Nay! I'm surprise that its texture is as good as the custard one!
Need more cookies???
Yes, please!

Update on 19 Jan 2017: I have three really good melt-in-you-mouth Biscuit Samprit / Biskut Ceri cookies to share at here.

Here's the recipe from Kitchen Flavours
(with my notes and modification in blue)

Makes 32 very small cookies
120g butter, soften (or margarine) - I used butter
75g icing sugar
170g plain flour
20g custard flour (or Dutch processed cocoa powder, preferably Valrhona if you want to bake the chocolate ones)
60g cornflour
1 egg yolk
1/4 tsp rose essence (or vanilla extract) - I used 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
few drops yellow food colouring (optional) - I didn't use that
glazed cherries, roughly chopped to decorate

Cream butter and icing sugar until light and creamy. Add in egg yolk, yellow food colouring (if using), rose essence (or vanilla), and mix till evenly combined. Add in the flours and knead to a soft dough. Do not over-knead.

Using the piping nozzle (plus my thumb), pipe (or press) out the dough on a baking sheet lined with baking paper.

Cut up some glazed cherries to small pieces. Place a small piece of the cut cherries in the center of the piped out cookie, pressing it lightly.

Bake in a preheated oven at 150°C or 150°C fan forced for about 20 mins or 15 mins if you are using fan forced oven, rotating the pans at half-time. Cool in pan for 2-3 mins, remove cookies and cool completely on wire rack.

Store in airtight containers (or recycled Milo or Horlicks tins - so nostalgic!)

Happy Baking
Please support me and like me at Facebook...

Guess what? I always assume that my grandmother hasn't bake biscuit samprit before and I'm totally wrong!!! Later, I found this nostalgic biscuit samprit cookie press from my box of treasures which I have inherited from my grandmother... How can miss out this item all for the fact that I'm actually the one who is safe keeping these treasures??? Sotong* me!

*Sotong means octopus in Malay language and it has an underlying meaning saying a person does not know what is going on.

See this!
My grandmother did baked biscuit samprit before...
For some strange reasons, we didn't bake these cookies together.


  1. It's lovely that this is associated with your grandma, memories make food better :D
    Delicious cookies, the cherry on top is super literal here!

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. Oooohhh I don't know what is biacuit samprit so I scroll to the picture to see how it looks like... Ok now I know.. I've seen this a lot but dont know what they are called, normally I just call them butter cookies, but I know they are very 'soong' and buttery.. Melt in the mouth, nice!!

  3. Oh yes, i love these too... made these recently and they were just yummy... tks for participating in best recipes. So great to see u... we shld exchange cookis someday soon

  4. That's right, Zoe! It's my fav childhood cookie too. I remember I will save the cherry for last.

  5. Yum! I should also bake some for CNY this year.

  6. recycled Horlicks or Milo tins, haha :)

  7. these cookies look so much like the butter cookies from our bakeries as well... soft... thank you for sharing...

  8. I didn't know these are called biscuit samprit. How nice to remember your grandma every time you bake or eat these biscuits.

  9. Yummy Samprit biscuits..... I feel to munch it..... :)

  10. Zoe, I used to enjoy these cookies too when I was a (fat) little girl! Yes, those days these biscuits came in those old Milo or Horlicks tins. So nostalgic thinking of it!

  11. OMG These I LOVE to eat! my grandmother used to bake cookies and curry puffs all nonya or traditional singapore/malaysian style and sell them from her house. I love these and would love to try baking them (once our big oven is fixed! Its been down for a week) but for now I'm happy to purchase them in large boxes!

  12. I have never eaten this before but reading your experience, reminded me years ago when I done a batch of dragon cookie. My thumb were sore bad.

  13. How cute.. These cookies look irresistibly adorable :D

  14. I envy you Zoe, you got to spend some time in the kitchen with your grandma. I never met both my grandmothers ,wish I did so could have learnt more aunthentic cooking from them :). Your biscuits looks delicious

  15. Hi Zoe, sorry I've just updated my recent post "香蔥牛油餅乾 Butter Cookies with Spring Onion" to your event and I noticed that the post has not linked properly. Could you please remove the post and I shall re-post again? Thank you.

    1. No worries! I have deleted your post. Please link up with us again when you have updated your post :D


  16. Seeing and enjoying these yummy-licious buttery Biscuit Samprit, all the pain & hard work is worth it ... hee ..hee ... Little 'red' Thumbs Up ^-^!

  17. I remember that this is also a popular Hari Raya cookie as my Malay neighbour used to make these. Yours look good too!

  18. Hi Zoe,
    I miss these cookies, am not making any cookies this year! No time at all to bake cookies! sobbing!! But on a bright note, my sister is making it and will be bringing the cookies back to my dad's place to share with all of us! Can't wait!
    Using Planta is the popular option of baking cakes and cookies back then. Remember Daisy margarine? Haha! Another famous brand back then too, but we always use Planta. My sis says that she will use Planta margarine, simply because my mom used it, and it brings back fond memories when we bake these together with her.
    I've not tried the chocolate ones, a great idea for varieties!
    And yes, on the recycled Milo tins! We don't use Horlicks tins, we use Horlicks bottle jars!
    Glad that you've enjoyed the cookies!
    Your grandma's samprit mould is a treasure!

  19. Aah ...sweet memories. This are so pretty! ^.^

  20. I love eating these biscuits!!! Nicely done zoe!!

  21. I used to wallop this like a champ! LOL

  22. These biscuits are so gosh darned cute! I love them!

  23. Zoe , these cookies look like the ones I've seen in some family-owned bakeries here , I haven't tried it though :P I need to buy that kind of cookie mould , it would be much easier than using a piping bag :D

  24. Wow these are super cute! I love the before and after photos. It looks exactly the same! :D

    Nessy Eater

  25. So very cute looking! It resemble butter cookies, right? I enjoyed the story about you and your grandmother. She sounds like a lovely person.

  26. Self eat,sure have to use good quality butter
    I'm sure these biscuit semprit are very yummy

  27. Hi Zoe,
    This looks like butter cookies to me. Maybe they are similar or they are sibling haha
    You made them so nicely. Love it! and the chocolate version too!
    My grandma store her cookies in milo tin too! The cookies stay crispy and keep really well In the tin.

  28. I love these, not only are they easy to make they're sooooo pretty too!

  29. Zoe these take me back to childhood!! LOVE!!

  30. Used to bake these b4 I got married. My mum called it the 菊花饼。need to go search whether my mum still keep that nostalgic cookie press of hers.

  31. the sight of those cookies certainly make insatiable appetite. thanks for sharing the recipe.