Almond, Raisin and Lemon Biscotti
Howdy. So here are some very quick biscotti that turn out really impressively with minimal effort. What a great combo. Drag some people in off the street to show off to, if necessary. Serve with coffee, or hand them out with some ice-cream, and generally swank about how easy they are.
They are veeeeehry tasty and veeeehry crunchy, and veeeehry versatile, because you can change the flavours to suit what you like. (Suggestions will follow the recipe). They freeze really well too and don’t take long to defrost. I also put less sugar in than regular recipes. No-one has ever complained they are not sweet enough. So they are, in short: A Winner.
Mine were almond, lemon, raisin and a bit of rosemary, but the rosemary was mainly to look good in the picture, as I have to fess up and say you can’t really taste it.
So in this here bowl we have:
- 75g caster sugar
- 120g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 45g almonds chopped in half
- 50g raisins
- Zest of one lemon.
- 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (optional. Or try putting a tablespoon in and see if you can taste it. Then tell everyone you made up some rosemary biscotti.)
Stir it all up, then crack ONE EGG in, and mix it with a fork. You will think: ‘Hmm this is very dry, surely there isn’t enough liquid to make this biscuit-like?’, but I promise there is. When you can go no further with the fork, use your hand and squish it together. It looks like this:
Then squish it into two balls of equal size, and roll each one in your hand into a sausage shape about 6 inches long. Put them on some grease proof paper on a baking tray and flatten them down a little bit.
Bake at 180° C for about half an hour. Before and after the tanning parlour:
So, as we know, they are ‘twice-cooked’ (bis-cuits/bis-cotti in French/Italian). So next you put them on a rack to get touch-cool, (they will stick to the grease proof paper if you leave them on the tray), and then on a chopping board slice them in a diagonal way, each about 1cm thick. Like so:
Then you spread the biscuits out flat on the grease proof paper again, and put them back in the oven at 180 again. Ten minutes one side, flip them over and cook five minutes more, so they go pale brown on both sides.
Done. Proceed with Showing Off.
- 1 egg
- 75 g caster sugar
- 120g plain flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 50g raisins
- 45g almonds
- zest of one lemon
- 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (optional)
- Mix the dry ingredients with a fork, add the egg and continue mixing with the fork and then with your hand until it all comes together in a lump. Divide in half and form each into a sausage about 6 or 7 inches in length. Put on grease proof paper on a baking tray and flatten slightly.
- Bake at 180 degrees, then take out of oven and cool slightly before slicing diagonally into 1cm slices. Cook again for another ten minutes, turn over and do ANOTHER ten minutes, so each side gets a chance to dry out and brown slightly.
- - 50g dried cranberries and 45g of pistachios
- - 50g dried dates (cut into quarters so they're not too bulky) and 45g hazelnuts.
- You can use orange zest instead of lemon. Use a whole orange so you can really taste it.
- I even did savoury ones once, inspired by a recipe by strawberryplum.com - they were black pepper, fennel seeds and rosemary.
- Eat with coffee in the daytime, or dipped into ice-cream for a kids-style dessert, or with soft French cheeses or English Stilton and a glass of port for an adult dessert!