Crisp and light, sliced and dried Italian biscuits. This specific recipe with an oil dough needs to be made in advance, covered and chilled for at least 2 hours or overnight before shaping into a roll and baking. When I bake this in my 90 cm oven I double up on the recipe below to get maximum space utilisation on my big baking trays.
1 whole egg
1 egg white
125 ml sunflower oil
140 g / 175 ml sugar
5 ml vanilla essence
80 g / 200 ml coarsely chopped nuts *see note below
225 g / 400 ml cake flour
1 ml salt
5 ml aniseed (optional)
7,5 ml baking powder
Beat together the egg, egg white, sugar, oil, vanilla essence until well blended. I use my balloon whisk on Kenwood. Add the nuts, flour, aniseed, baking powder & salt and mix well with the dough hook attachment fitted. The mixture becomes thick and sticky so won’t be able to mix with balloon whisk. Cover the bowl and put into fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight to become firm and manageable. Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease a large baking tray or use baking paper that’s lightly sprayed with non-stick. Divide the dough into two portions and shape each into a neat roll about 30 cm in length. Place on the baking tray and allow some space in between for spreading. Lower the oven temp to 160°C and put the tray in oven. Bake the rolls for about 20 minutes or until firm and lightly browned. In my gas oven I baked for 40 min today. Remove the baking tray from the oven and turn down the temperature to 100°C. Cut each roll into diagonal slices about 15 mm wide. Lay the strips on their sides on the baking tray and return to the oven. Place a spoon in the oven door and leave the biscotti in the oven for 20-30 minutes to dry out and become crispy and lightly browned. Switch off the oven and allow to cool in the oven.
Store in airtight container once it has cooled down completely.
Yields about 36 biscotti depending on size.
*Variations: You can use any nuts of choice, choc chips, coconut (desiccated), lemon rind.
Recipe and photo: Elsabie Templeton