Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dark Chocolate and Cranberry Biscotti

I feel like a catch up is in order as I have been very lax with my blog writing lately. My main excuse has been work experience.....the 5.15 am starts are really killing me. There is nothing worse than walking to the tram in the dark to a job that you won't get payed for. Luckily I have only one more day left........which means an end to being harassed by an older married man (do I care to share this story? No. No, I don't......but if this person could love me to death, I would have died on my first shift......it really is a long story. 

I have been continuing with my sugar cookies. They are progressively getting better and better.....and its so very satisfying. The sort of satisfying that I totally didn't care that my housemate made fun of me for staying in on a friday night to finnish a batch of cookies.

 I have been working on my cup cake decorating, and made these amazing tasting jasmine tea and honey cakes.....they were insanely delicious right out of the oven.
 I invented a chai latte cake......which tasted pretty damn good. I brewed tea into the milk that I used in the cake and then added extra chai spices. Then I made a buttercream icing with more chia spices and vanilla.

 I bought a new skirt from Zara.......and I am a wee bit in love with that place. Its just so nice! I'm not going to lie though, the first time I went in there I was totally intimidated......there was just so many people in such well put together outfits. I didn't know what to do.....so I bought a skirt. For days I went around thinking about how fancy I was, then I got the electricity bill and the fanciness died, as the panic set it.......I SPENT HOW MUCH ON A SKIRT??
 This is the most trivial of my news.......but I have a scratch on my face, I don't even think you can see it anymore. I have no idea how I got it but woke up after 'girls night' (best you don't ask about that one either) I have been telling people I got it in a fight though......because it is about the most unrealistic thing to say.
 But finally to the important stuff.....tonight I made biscotti. I have always had a soft spot for this little treat. I remember living in noosa sending my boyfriend at the time on errands to go find biscotti. Next to none of the cafes would sell it, so we would run all over town looking for this little biscuit. The poor boy! He used to have to go on these such errands all the time.......because I would decide that I wanted Italian hot chocolate, not just any hot chocolate, or a certain sort of cocktail. Once he even made the ice cream shop open after hours......just for me. Lovely! (No wonder I complain about being single.)

Anyway, the moral of the story is I love biscotti. I don't know where this love affair began because we never had cookies in our house (I don't count gluten and sugar free wholemeal cookies as real cookies) little own italian double baked cookies, but all the same I love them dearly. I took the recipe (and the picture below) from a donna hay magazine, but when I made it myself I decided that it needed some tweaking. Instead of pistachio nuts I used dark chocolate with cranberries (I think these two flavours are best friends.) When I bit into the cookie I wanted to cry IT WAS THAT GOOD.  I'm not exaggerating.....these little babies are amazingly good. I'm just worried that we have a whole batch in the house (are really thankful I went for a run today.)

Cranberry and Dark Chocolate Biscotti

You will need:
  • 2 cups of plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • 3/4 cup of caster sugar
  • 3 eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Finely grated zest of one orange
  • 1 cup of dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup of dried cranberries

What to do:

1. Sift all the dry ingredients together in a bowl. 

2. Whisk together eggs, orange zest and vanilla.

 3. Add cranberries and chocolate to the dry mix.
4. Mix everything together
5. Add wet ingredients. Mix. Turn out onto a board and knead until smooth.
 6. Divide the dough into two. Roll into two logs that are about 20 cm long and flatten the tops.
7. Bake the logs at 160 for 30 minute or until firm to touch.
 8. Let the logs cool completely and then slice on a slight diagonal.
9. Return to the oven for ten minutes on a tray with baking paper.

10. Let them cool if you can stand it.....or eat them hot and burn your tongue. 

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