Updated post on 9/1/2017
I have decided to update a recipe of Chinese New Cookies style of biscotti. It is much crispier and thinner.
Though mine still cannot enter competition, what is needed is a sharp knife, a very sharp knife to sliced beautifully . Please refer to recipe 2 for the Chinese New Year style that was commonly sold during Chinese New Year period.
This is another type of classic biscuit that was sold in the famous chain coffee cafe such as Starbucks. It is a crispy type of biscuits and preparation is definitely not difficult at all.
I get this recipe from another old cookbook – “The Essential Baking Cookbook” published by Murdoch Books in 2000. This is a simple recipe and in fact most of the traditional recipe are simple. Both ingredients and method are rather simple too..
It is called biscotti because it is twice baked. The dough is baked until cooked, sliced into small pieces and re baked again until it become crunchy. It is usually served with some hot beverages.
As per Wikipedia:
“Biscotti (/bɪˈskɒti/; Italian pronunciation: [bisˈkɔtti]; English: twice cooked), also known as cantuccini (English: coffee bread), are twice-baked cookies (or biscuits) originating in the Italian city of Prato. The biscuits are oblong-shaped almond biscuits, made dry and crunchy through cutting the loaf of dough while still hot and fresh from baking in the oven. “Biscotti” is the plural form of biscotto. The word originates from the medieval Latin word biscoctus, meaning “twice-cooked/baked.” It defined oven baked goods that were baked twice, so they were very dry and could be stored for long periods of time. Pliny the Elder boasted that such goods would be edible for centuries.Such non-perishable food was particularly useful during journeys and wars, and twice baked breads were a staple food of the Roman Legions.” (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biscotti)
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Recipe adapted from: Page 114 Biscotti – “The Essential Baking Cookbook” published by Murdoch Books in 2000
2 cups of self raising flour
1 cup of caster sugar
50 grams of almond
50 grams of pistachios
2 eggs and 1 egg yolk for dough
1 egg for egg washing
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
1 teaspoon of grated orange rind
- 4 egg whites
- 100 grams of castor sugar
- 25 grams of milk powder
- 50 grams of rice flour
- 50 grams of low protein flour or cake flour
- 150 grams of whole almonds
STEPS OF PREPARATION
Preheat the oven to 180 degree Celsius.
In a big mixing bowl, put the sifted self raising flour and castor sugar. Make a well in the centre. Add 2 eggs and 1 egg yolk to the well. Used a tablespoon to stir until well combined. Add in the almonds and pistachios. Use hand to knead in a lightly floured surface for 2-3 minutes. If the dough is too stiff, sprinkle a little water on top of the dough.
Divide the dough into two equal portions. For each portion, shape it about 25cm long x 8 cm wide (or 10 inches x 3 inches). Slightly flatten the dough and leave adequate space for the dough to expand when baked. Beat the remaining one egg and egg wash the dough. Bake in the oven at 180 degree Celsius for 35 minutes. After 35 minutes, remove from oven and let it cool. Meanwhile reduce the oven temperature to 150 degree Celsius.
When the biscotti have cooled slightly, use a serrated knife to cut the log into 4mm thickness. Place the cut biscotti on the baking tray with the flat side down.Bake in the oven at 150 degree Celsius for another 8 minutes or until crunchy and dry. Cool in a wire rack and store in an air tight container for up to a week of two. Best served with some breakfast beverages.
For Chinese New year version
- Roast the whole almond in the oven at 130 degree Celsius for 10-15 minutes or until aromatic.
- Beat the egg white and sugar until stiff peak. If preferred, you can add 1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar to assist in the beating.
- Sift the milk powder, rice flour and low protein flour into the egg white. Stir lightly until well combined. Add the toasted almond until well mixed.
- Transfer to a long loaf tin ( I used 4 x 8 inches ) and ensure that the tin is well greased with butter and lined with baking paper.
- Baked in the oven at 170 degree Celsius until a skewer inserts into the centre comes out clean. Transfer out and let it cooled completely.
- Once the loaf is cooled completely, wrap the loaf and let it chilled overnight in the freezer to assist the later slicing.
- On the next day, use a sharp knife to slice thinly about 0.5 – 1 mm thickness, arrange properly in a baking tray and bake in the pre-heated oven of 120 degree Celsius until crispy which will take about 25-30 minutes. Timing will depend on the thickness of your biscotti sliced.
- Once cooled, immediately store in an air tight container to ensure crispiness.
It is not a difficult bake and I like the crunchiness of biscuits and the nuts. There is no fix and fast rule of the types of nuts used, possibly you want to consider some chocolate biscotti with macadamia nuts? With this recipe, I believed you will not need to buy the biscotti from Starbucks any more! Ha-ha.
Hope you like this simple post a day. Cheers and have a nice day.
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