Treat yourself to a taste of Italy with your morning coffee!
It is an indulgence The Husband and I enjoy at the weekend when we have the time to make a pot of coffee and sit down to chat whilst ‘dunking’ our biscotti. Its name means that it is ‘twice baked’ and as a consequence it is a very dry and hard biscuit. The Italians dunk their biscotti in a glass of sweet wine at the end of a meal but, here in England, it is eaten as an accompaniment to coffee. I will explain how to make a plain almond biscotti, but there are lots of variations, adding lemon or orange zest, varying the nuts included and adding chocolate.
A word of advice if you intend to bake this yourself – don’t leave it in the oven for too long. On one memorable occasion I overcooked the mixture and ended up with such a hard biscuit that we were in danger of having to make an emergency trip to the dentist! Even the dogs were unable to crunch their way through it!
It is simple to make and I use a Delia Smith recipe .
- 110g plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 25g ground almonds
- 50g almonds (I use skinned almonds and leave some whole and halve the rest)
- 75g golden caster sugar
- 1 large egg
- few drops almond essence
Preheat the oven to gas mark 3 (170 degrees).
- Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a large bowl.
- Then add the other dry ingredients and stir everything together.
- Next add the egg and vanilla essence.
- Bring all the ingredients together using a spoon and then your hands. (This needs quite a lot of working with your hands to knead to a dough – don’t worry if it seems a bit dry).
- Put mixture on floured surface and roll out into a log shape about 28cm long.
- Now it’s ready to go in the centre of your preheated oven for about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to completely cool down.
- Preheat oven to Gas Mark 2 (150 degrees).
- Once the biscotti has completely cooled, cut into diagonal pieces 1cm wide.
- Place the slices on baking parchment on a baking tray and pop back into the oven and bake for 30 minutes. (Take care – don’t leave them for too long or they will become very crisp)
- Leave to cool again and then store in an airtight tin.
Now you can make a pot of coffee, put you feet up and enjoy! Buon appetito!