Fruit And Nut Biscotti

“Some Biscotti with your Cappuccino, mam?”, asked the waiter of a newly opened bakery cum cafe. “Would love to”, I replied with a confident smile, in my mind wondering… “what’s that?” This was my introduction, rather, encounter with the much loved Italian delight, right here, in the by-lanes of Mumbai 🙂
Just so you know, Biscotti is the plural form of Biscotto, as opposed to how its usually referred. It means ‘baked twice’. This crunchy and more delicious cousin of Rusk, is indeed a wonderful companion to Cappuccino and has a very long shelf life.
BiscottiIngredients:
250gm plain flour
250 gm caster sugar
3 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 tbsp baking powder
Fruit and Nuts as you like – hazelnuts, chopped dates, dried cherries, pistachios, etc.
I added:
50 gm whole almonds
50 gm black raisins
50 gm whole cashews
50 gm lightly chopped walnuts
Zest of 1 lemon

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line the baking trays with baking parchment.
2. Mix the flour, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl.
3. Add half the beaten eggs and mix well. Keep adding the eggs only till the dough takes shape, but isn’t too wet. You might not need all of the eggs.
4. Add the fruits, nuts, lemon zest and mix well.
5. Divide the dough into six parts. Roll each part into sausage shapes about 3cm in diameter. Place each roll at least 6 cm apart on on baking trays. This will give enough space for the cake to rise.
Tip: Dip your hands in water so the dough doesn’t stick to the hands while rolling.
6. Lightly flatten the rolls and bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until golden brown.
7.  Remove from the oven and leave for 15 minutes to cool and firm up.
8. Now reduce the temperature of the oven to 140C.
9. With a serrated knife, cut out the biscotti from the rolls at an angle into 5mm slices and lay these on the baking trays.
10. Place the trays back in the oven and bake for around 10 minutes.
11. Pull the trays out, turn the biscotti over and slide the trays back in the oven. Now cook for another 12-15 minutes or until golden brown.
12. When they look ready, remove from the oven and let them cool on the cake or wire racks.
13. Store in an airtight container.

Serve your Biscotti with coffee or tea. Just make sure you make a whole lot of them, because… 😉

All Things Sweet

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Warm welcome to BitesandPlaces!
My humble little blog has its own story to tell… my story… I’m gregarious being, vagabond at heart and have a monstrous appetite for food. I used to be a Human Resource professional until few years ago. To be among, with and for people was the reason I’d chosen this field.
Being in HR, I could only accomplish the ‘people’ part. I still yearned to be in those places I saw on TV and travel magazines and craved to eat all kinds of food that lulls you into coma. I didn’t want to be just a spectator anymore. I wanted to be in those pictures.
Luck smiled at me and I fell sick with an awful heart, lungs and liver disorder. Family said stay home. Rest.
Rest? Were they crazy? I grabbed this opportunity and quit my job; to pursue my passion – people, places and food.

Being on my own gave me lot of spare time for all the three.
I’m not a professional cook, but I’m mighty passionate about cooking. Although Indian, BitesandPlaces does not restrict itself to just the dishes of my country, which are toothsome beyond doubt. I’ve also tried to put together a bunch of mouth-watering and eye-pleasing recipes scattered from all parts the world. A lot of them are a tribute to my mum’s kitchen, the ones I grew up with. Few of them are a result of my experimentation and few others, borrowed from my generous friends 🙂

I religiously follow Andrew Zimmern’s favorite quote – what looks good to your eyes, EAT IT!! After all food is something that follows no boundaries, isn’t it.

Travel, I believe, is about exploring new places, meeting new people, building new relations, soaking in their culture, gorging on their cuisines, discovering their stories and of course, capturing all of these in my teeny-tiny camera.

After having been there and done that, I was inspired to share my travelogues with you, encourage you to travel and in some way find a bit of your happiness through me.
Thus BitesandPlaces was born!

Life’s a journey and people, places and food are all a part of it. So, come along with me and eat your way through this journey called Life…

I like staying connected. And it’ll be a frosting on my cake if you drop a line or two at natasha@bitesandplaces.com.

Celebrate Life!!!
Natasha Gracious

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