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Monday, December 9, 2013

[Walnut Lemon Biscotti] A Simply Delicious Treat for a Tea/Coffee Time

How many cups of tea or coffee do you drink a day? I drink about four cups of tea a day. They are usually black tea with milk. But, the last cup can be either peppermint, lemon, or Egyptian licorice tea. I make tea in my red tumbler in the morning just before I leave for work. And I drink it while I drive. I love having tea in the car. :) Then, my second tea bag is used around 10 in the morning. When I'm at office, I am very lazy to go to the kitchenette to boil the water. That is why I refrain myself from making the second cup of tea much needed, as long as possible. Obviously, on Mondays, I tend to make the second cup earlier than other days. :) And my third cup of tea is made about an hour later after lunch. Then, finally I have my last cup of the day at home. 

Not so much in the evening, but during the day, I want something crunchy and small to accompany my tea. A big cookie would be a good idea. But, I find a small biscotti even better! You can just crack a bite or dunk it in your tea or coffee to make it a little softer before having a delicate bite which disassembles in your mouth with a heavenly flavour.

Biscotti means "baked twice" in Italian. I find the flavour of these twice-baked Italian biscuits get even better over time. So, you can make a large batch to make them last for a week or even longer.

I wanted to have some authentic recipe. So I got this recipe a few years ago from an Italian site. As I've mentioned a few times, I like, but dislike(?) European recipes since the measuring is all by weight, not by volume which is much easier and faster. But, if it's a good recipe, I still use it, but after converting from the weight to the volume. Here goes I the base biscotti/cantucci recipe I use. You can add or switch with other nut, spice, or dried fruit with the ones in the original recipe, as I do often. This is a very easy and good recipe to make good biscotti. :)

Here goes the recipe for a nice batch of biscotti!

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup walnut
3 eggs
lemon zest from 1 lemon

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celsius), with a rack in the centre.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar.

3. Add walnut and coat well with dry ingredients.

4. In another bowl, cream butter.

5. Beat in egg, one at a time and  mix well each time.
Butter is curdles since I use cold eggs. It's always a good idea to use room temperature eggs.

6. Add butter+egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix it quickly.

7. Add lemon zest and mix.

8. Using your hands, pat into two slightly flattened log, about 8 by 4 inches (20cm * 10 cm) each.

9. Bake until firm and lightly browned, and top is slightly cracked, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for 5-10 minutes.

10. Transfer to a cutting board. Using a knife, cut log crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. 

11. Arrange on a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet. 

Bake, rotating sheet halfway through, until slices are just turning brown around the edges, for about 20 minutes. 

Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Enjoy with warm milk, coffee or tea!


Walnut Lemon Biscotti


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