I like bis­cotti chewy, but I also like bis­cotti crunchy, so cook­ing them fresh puts you in con­trol to go ei­ther way, or, even bet­ter, do some of each. They’re so much fun to make, and they can take on dif­fer­ent flavours, so feel free to ex­per­i­ment. MAKES 40 PIECES 1 HOUR 15 MIN­UTES, PLUS CHILL­ING 250g un­salted but­ter 3 large free-range eggs (at room tem­per­a­ture) 600g Tipo 00 flour 250g soft light brown 150g qual­ity dark sugar choco­late (70 per cent) 1 tea­spoon vanilla bean 75g blanched al­monds paste 75g blanched hazel­nuts 1 cle­men­tine

❄ In a very large bowl, cream the but­ter, sugar, vanilla bean paste and finely grated cle­men­tine zest to­gether. Whip the eggs, then beat into the creamed mix­ture with a pinch of sea salt. Slowly stir in the flour un­til com­bined. Roughly chop the choco­late and nuts, then use your hands to push and squash them into the mix­ture, dis­tribut­ing them as evenly as you can. Shape the dough into an A4-sized rec­tan­gle, wrap it in cling­film, and pop in the fridge to chill for 30 min­utes.

❄ Pre­heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4 and line two large bak­ing trays with grease­proof pa­per. Un­wrap the dough and cut it in half length­ways, re­shap­ing each piece into a long rec­tan­gle. Place one in the cen­tre of each tray and bake for about 35 min­utes, or un­til just start­ing to brown.

❄ Let the bis­cotti logs cool for 5 min­utes, then use a ser­rated knife to cut each one into slices just un­der 2cm thick. Lay the slices on their sides on the trays and re­turn to the oven for an­other 8 to 10 min­utes, or un­til they look gor­geous and lightly golden. You can ei­ther eat them straight away, or, if you want them to last, leave them in the oven when you turn it off un­til the oven is cold, so that they dry out and get re­ally crunchy. Store in an air­tight con­tainer, where they’ll keep hap­pily for a good cou­ple of weeks, pack­ag­ing up at the last minute for gift­ing. THINK AHEAD To pre­pare for un­ex­pected teatime guests, wrap and freeze the trays of sliced bis­cotti be­fore the se­cond bake so you’ve got them ready and rar­ing to go. Bake for 10 min­utes from frozen. NUTRI­TION PER SERV­ING 172 kcal; 9.7g fat (4.6g sat­u­rated); 3.6g pro­tein; 17.8g carbs; 7.7g sug­ars; 0.1g salt; 0.9g fi­bre

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