How to Make Sailor's Cookie: 15 Steps

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How to Make Sailor's Cookie: 15 Steps
How to Make Sailor's Cookie: 15 Steps

The sailor biscuit is actually a hard, dry bread very common in the diet of soldiers and sailors throughout history. The biscuit can last for years if stored correctly, which makes it super popular with campers and hikers. The recipe is easy to prepare. You can make your own old-fashioned sailor biscuit with just a handful of ingredients. To add a little more flavor to the recipe, add some spices and flavorings.


  • 2 cups (260 g) of flour.
  • 1 cup (240 ml) of water.
  • 2 teaspoons (10 g) of salt.


Part 1 of 3: Beating and Cutting the Dough

Make Hardtack Step 1

Step 1. Preheat oven to 190 °C

Marine biscuit dough is very quick to make. Preheat oven before starting. When he's ready, it's time to get down to business.

Step 2. Put two cups of white flour in a bowl

You can use whatever type of flour you feel best, but white will make the cookies last longer. Cookies made with wholemeal or rye flour have a shorter shelf life.

Add more flour to make a larger batch of cookies

Keep the ratio of two cups of flour to one of water, even if you choose to use another type of flour.

Step 3. Add a cup of water

Slowly pour the water into the bowl while stirring the dough with your other hand. Add water little by little: add part, mix the dough and add a little more. Continue until finished.

Step 4. Roll the dough into a ball

Knead the dough with both hands until it has a uniform consistency, similar to plasticine. Add a little more water if the dough is floury.

  • You can also use a spoon to stir the dough, but it is possible that it will get too hard. It's best to use your hands. If you don't want to get them dirty, protect them with kitchen gloves.
  • It's optional, but you can also add two teaspoons of salt to the dough.

Step 5. Roll out the dough until it is 0.5 cm thick

Sprinkle a little more flour into the dough so it doesn't stick to your work surface. Then open it with a rolling pin until it is 0.5 cm thick, give or take.

If you don't have a noodle roll, use a plastic tube or tall glass

Step 6. Cut the dough into 7.5 cm x 7.5 cm squares

Traditional sailor biscuits were boxy. Cut the dough into this shape if you want to follow the original recipe. Cut it into even pieces with a knife or pizza cutter.

  • Size is just a suggestion. You can cut the dough to the size and shape you like. Some people use cookie cutters to make the pieces smaller and easier to carry.
  • Don't throw away leftovers. Bake them with the cookies.

Step 7. Punch evenly spaced holes in the biscuits in a straight line

The holes will allow air and moisture from the dough to escape into the oven. Use a knife or fork to punch evenly spaced holes throughout the dough. The openings should be straight so that you can easily break the cookies.

  • There is no set number of holes, but the more the better. This way, much of the air and moisture will come out of the dough, making the cookies last longer.
  • The holes should reach the other side of the biscuits. Turn them over to make sure the holes are going through the entire mass.

Part 2 of 3: Baking and saving cookies

Make Hardtack Step 8

Step 1. Distribute the cookies on a baking sheet

Don't overlap them or leave them too close together. Otherwise they will stick together. The dough doesn't usually grow much, so it's not necessary to leave a lot of space between the cookies.

Do not grease the pan. The oil will be absorbed into the dough, causing the cookies to spoil faster

Make Hardtack Step 9

Step 2. Bake the cookies for 30 minutes on each side

So they will brown evenly. When the first side is done, turn the cookies over to bake the other.

Be careful when turning the cookies. Use a peg so you don't get burned

Make Hardtack Step 10

Step 3. Transfer the cold cookies to an airtight container

Allow cookies to cool for several hours. Cut one in half to make sure it's not hot inside. Then pass them into a pot or bag.

Choose a transparent container to see if the cookies are moldy or not without having to open it

Make Hardtack Step 11

Step 4. Store cookies in a cool place out of the sun

As long as they are properly stored, sailor biscuits can last for years. After placing them in an airtight container, put them in a cool place away from direct sunlight. Only take them out when eating.

  • Store cookies in small quantities. So if you only want to eat a few, you don't need to expose them all to air and moisture.
  • Look out for mold on the cookies. Throw them away if fungi start to appear and prepare a new batch.
  • Some trekkers vacuum-seal the biscuits so they last even longer.

Part 3 of 3: Tasting Different Flavors

Make Hardtack Step 12

Step 1. Add spices to add flavor

You can add almost any powdered spice to your cookies to make them more flavorful. For a little extra taste, try using rosemary or oregano. If you prefer spicy flavors, try powdered cayenne pepper. You can also add more salt to the dough. All these options will give a special touch to the cookies, which are quite plain plain.

  • Start by adding a teaspoon of seasoning to a small batch. Taste the final result and increase the amount of seasoning if the cookies need more flavor.
  • Try mixing several batches of sailor biscuits, each with a flavor, to see which one you prefer. Use whichever seasoning works best to make a larger batch.

Step 2. Add 1/4 cup of coconut oil to the recipe for a sweet touch

Coconut oil will give sailor biscuits a whole new taste. The oil will also make the dough softer and easier to chew.

Any type of oil reduces the durability of the biscuits. Only use coconut oil if you're going to eat them soon. Leave the ingredient aside if you want to keep them longer

Step 3. Add a tablespoon of honey to the dough

A little honey will add a sweet touch to the cookies, which are usually pretty bland. Try adding a teaspoon of honey to the dough. Add a little more if you want a stronger flavor.

  • You can also honey the biscuits before eating them, as if they were toast.
  • Keep in mind that honey will reduce the durability of cookies. In order not to add mold, eat them in a few months at most.
Make Hardtack Step 15

Step 4. Replace white flour with sorghum flour to make the dough sweeter

Although white flour increases the durability of biscuits, there are far tastier flours. Sorghum flour is famous for its naturally sweet taste. Use it in place of white flour to make cookies more delicious.

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