its been a while since i last updated on this blog – and i have a very good reason for the long break. for the past couple of weeks, i haven’t been able to get any good clicks on my trusty 5-year-old digital camera. maybe its just me, but whatever i snap just doesn’t turn out well. and given just how important the visual element for food, i have been holding back from posting some rather nice recipes (if i may say so myself!) until i click something worthwhile. well, i have been thinking of getting a new camera for a while now – so maybe the gods are giving me a good enough reason to splurge on one! 🙂
so, i decided that while i may not be shooting anything new for the moment, i might as well clear some of my older folders. just a while back, i was browsing through my folders when i came across some clicks i had taken for some Almond Biscotti (by Tarla Dalal) i had baked a while back. i remember enjoying the biscuits with espresso, but for some reason or another, must have forgotten to blog about them. well, better late than never, right?
the name “biscotti” derives from Italian which means “twice-cooked/baked”. the traditional procedure involves baking the rolled dough once, cooling it and then cutting it up and then baking it again. the result is the dry logs that can be stored for long periods of time. such food was apparently rather popular with the Roman Legions, and were a staple food during long journeys.
Tarla Dalal’s recipe below is a short-cut and requires you to bake the biscotti only once. despite the alteration in baking procedure, there is little change in their appeal – mildly sweet with the delicate crunch of almonds, these biscotti are sure to win you over! 🙂 so bake some today and enjoy them with a hot cuppa – i know i am thinking of doing just that! 🙂
1 cup Plain flour
1/4 cup sliced Almonds
1/4 cup Butter, softened
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1/4 cup Castor sugar
1 tsp Vanilla essence (*you can also use almond essence if you want a stronger flavour)
1-1/2 tbsp cold Milk
(*NOTE: The original also calls for 1 tsp of lemon rind, but i chose to omit it.)
Making the Almond Biscotti:
Preheat the oven to 160 dec C and line your baking tray with parchment or baking paper. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Add the vanilla essence and castor sugar (and lemon rind if using) and mix them in. Rub the butter into the flour mixture till the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add in the almond and toss them about until they are evenly distributed. Add in the milk gently knead the mixture into a dough. Refrigerate the dough in the fridge (not freezer) for 15 to 20 minutes. Take out the dough and roll it into 1/2-inch thick sheet. Cut out even-sized rectangles and arrange on the baking tray. If you have scraps left over, just roll them again and shape into rectangles. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove and cool on a wire rack. Serve with regular coffee/cappuccino or dunk it into a cup of espresso for the real kick! 🙂