|Classic Italian Almond Biscotti|
Originally made as a long-shelf-life food for travelers and carried by the Roman Legions, today’s biscotti are a popular accompaniment to cappuccino .
The modern biscotti however is associated with the Tuscan region of Italy, this I assume is because of the plentiful almond groves you will find in the Prato region where these are still known as Cantucci.
|Almond Blossom in Tuscany|
This popular Italian cookie traces its origins to Roman times and was the staple diet of the Legions.. The word biscotto derives from “bis,” Latin for twice, and “coctum” or baked (which became “cotto,” or cooked). The Roman biscotti were more about convenience food for travelers rather than a pleasurable treat for diners.
The cooking mechanism of this unleavened, finger-shaped wafers is first baked and this sliced and toasted is a second time second time to completely dry them out of their moisture, this increases its shelf life and can be stored for upto a month in an airtight container,
During the Renaissance European cuisine when through a change, and with it Biscotti re-emerged in Tuscany, where it was once again served with not only coffee but also with the local sweet wine ( Vin Santo)Centuries later, many still agree that dipping biscotti into Vin Santo is a perfect way to end a meal, or to while away an hour at a café.
From the almond receipr of Tuscany, the recipe has today expanded to anisette-, amaretto- and lemon-flavored dough and to other spices; to biscotti with raisins and other dried fruits; to biscotti studded with chocolate morsels , dipped in chocolate and with other varieties of nuts. Today, the flavorings are only limited to your imagination ... and whats more the Biscotti recipe calls for no butter or oil. Its virtually fat free !!!
225 gms Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Almond extract
1 tsp Vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
400 gms Roasted Almonds (chopped coarsely)
125 gms Sugar
Bake almonds in oven for 10 minutes at 180 degrees centigrade. Sieve together baking powder, salt and flour. Mix in a bowl the eggs vanilla, almond extract and sugar. Beat well and knead a dough with the eggs. On a lightly floured surface roll dough into a log about 14 inches (35 cm) long and 3 - 4 inches (8 - 10 cm) wide. Transfer log to the prepared baking sheet with butter paper and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until firm to the touch (log will spread during baking). Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes.