happy new year! i hope 2014 brings you much happiness, joy and success.
my first recipe for 2014 is a donna hay recipe that was published, in our local newspaper a few weeks ago, under the headline ‘a festive taste of italy’.
“this famous italian biscuit is the ultimate accompaniment to strong coffee or sweet dessert wine. the dough, containing no butter or oil, is baked, sliced then baked again, affording the biscotti its delicious signature crunch. it’s surprisingly simple to make.”
i have wanted to make biscotti but always thought it was too complicated/tricky. not so!
fyi > ‘biscotti’ are twice-cooked/baked biscuits. and because they are baked twice they are very dry and can be stored for long periods of time.
2 cups plain flour, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, sifted
3/4 cup caster sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon finely grated orange rind
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup blanched almonds, toasted > i used roasted almonds
step 1 –
1) preheat the oven to 160c.
2) place the flour, baking powder and sugar in a bowl and mix to combine.
3) add the eggs, vanilla, orange rind, cranberries and almonds and mix until a smooth dough forms.
if you prefer, you can substitute pistachios for the almonds or sultanas for the cranberries.
4) place the dough on a well floured surface and knead until smooth.
5) halve the dough and roll into 2 x 20cm long logs and flatten slightly.
6) place the logs on a large lightly greased baking tray and bake for 30-35 minutes or until cooked through.
7) set aside to cool completely.
step 2 –
1) using a serrated knife, cut the logs into 3mm thin slices and place on baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper.
if you want more elongated pieces of biscotti, slice them diagonally.
2) bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden and crisp. allow to cool on trays.
note: you can make the dough up to 1 month in advance. follow the recipe to the end of step 1, wrap the logs in plastic wrap and freeze them. when you are ready, thaw the logs and continue from step 2.
i was happy with the way the biscotti turned out. they were crunchy and yummy. and they were great gifts! i added some of the biscotti to my christmas gift hampers.
you can alter this recipe to add whatever you like. choc-orange hazelnut biscotti anyone?
“i thought about making biscuits, but there seemed to be more than enough calories on board.” ~ charlaine harris, from dead to worse