Friday, March 2, 2012

Biscotti di Zia Sarina

I really wanted to put a picture of the book, Sweet Sicily by Victoria Granof, on this entry but for some reason my computer, or Chrome or Blogspot didn't think it such a good idea so I am including a photo of the church of St George, the protector of Caccamo, Sicily, and the town's famed castle here instead.  Not a bad substitution, I think. Except that it makes me long for Sicily.  When that happens, I can only go back through my photographs, relive  in my mind the happy times had there and, of course, make some Sicilian food to soothe that part of my heart that sometimes aches for Italy.
The first cookie I featured on last Monday's show, was this one that is simple in taste and texture.  Perfect with an afternoon cup of coffee or that accompaniment to the morning espresso to kick-start your day!

Aunt Sarina's Biscotti

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons tangerine liqueur*, orange liqueur or orange juice
Pinch of salt
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (1 3/4 cups 00 flour if available)
1/2 cup blanched whole almonds, toasted

In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light.  Beat in the egg, vanilla, liqueur and salt and mix well.  Stir in the flour followed by the almonds.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently for a minute or so.  Divide the dough into two equal pieces and roll each into a log 10"x1.5".  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two  hours.

Preheat the oven to 375°F

Slice into 1/2 inch cookies and place of ungreased baking sheets 2 inches apart.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Remove from sheets and cool on a rack.
*Sweet Sicily has a very good Tangerine Liqueur recipe on page 199.  It is very simple and very good.

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