Category Archives: biscuits

Baci di Dama

20131224-214939.jpg

That’s Italian for the most amazing biscuits ever

Small bites of hazelnutty goodness sandwiched together with Nutella.

Before making these for myself, I had never actually tried these biscuits. I had seen them on a cooking programme on TV, I didn’t even know their name, I just knew they were bite sized Italian hazelnut biscuits with a hazelnut cream filling. They looked and sounded delicious. I knew they would be the most amazing biscuits. All I had to do was find out what they were.

A few google searches with vague descriptions were fruitless. I couldn’t find them on the programme’s website. Looking through my many cookbooks didn’t help. I guess I was just going to have to give up on these…

Now I don’t normally read let alone attempt recipes that don’t have pictures. I was slightly, no very, disappointed that my new cookbook didn’t have a picture for every recipe. Yet something drew me to this recipe, and as I read the description I knew I had found them!
(Despite not having a picture for every recipe I highly recommend this book, everything I have made so far has come out perfectly, I was probably over exaggerating how few pics it has, and all the pictures are mouthwatering!)

The recipe is very straight forward. I used my hand held electric whisk, not food processor, as it’s less hassle to clean.
The recipe says to leave the dough in the fridge for at least 30minutes. The first time I made these I left them in the fridge all day and still found it easy to form the biscuit balls.
There was no way I was going to weigh out the balls for them to all be the same (I am marginally OCD but that’s just taking it to the next level!) I think they look more homemade when they are slightly different shapes and sizes anyway.

20131224-215706.jpg
The recipe makes A LOT, which shouldn’t be a problem as they are incredibly moreish.
The first time I made these I froze half the dough and still ended up with about 40! The dough freezes very well and they tasted just as good than when made fresh.

20131224-215906.jpg
I also didn’t make my own gianduja filling, it is probably worth the effort, and I may attempt it in the future, but for now I’m sticking to Nutella.
More difficult than waiting for the dough to chill is waiting for the biscuits to cool so they can be sandwiched together. Obviously a good time to try them out, they taste really good warm (smother them with Nutella when they are warm…it goes all melty and messy..mmm). They taste really good cooled and without the Nutella as well (it’s probably a good thing this recipe makes a lot!)

20131224-221957.jpg

These are one of my favourite biscuits at the moment, crunchy, nutty and gooey (and bitesized, which means you can eat more without feeling guilty/greedy).

They go really well with a hot mug of coffee 🙂

And they make a great homemade gift

20131224-222009.jpg

P.S. It actually means ‘ladies kisses’ but I prefer my translation 🙂

Advertisements

It’s the most wonderful time of the year..

I love winter

I love the chilly,frosty mornings

The naked trees showing off their physique

Snow

Hibernation

Pretty Christmas lights and the gorgeous shop fronts filled with enticing delights

Gloves/mittens and fingerglovemitten hybrids

Snow

Christmas movies

Walking through quiet foggy roads

Did I mention snow?

The holiday season is upon us (earlier and earlier so it would seem) when the supermarkets stock their shelves with yummy Xmas treats, gorgeous gingerbread houses, panatonne, stollen,mince pies, Yule logs and mouthwatering continental biscuits.

20131217-225036.jpg

One of my favourites are ‘Zimtsterne’, German cinnamon star cookies. They are a macaroon type biscuit with a smooth,crunchy meringue topping. The warming cinnamon with the crunchy sugar is a definite winter winner.

After seeing a recipe for them in the December Goodfood magazine I decided I had to make them. I had a look at a few other recipes online, they all seemed pretty similar, and this recipe yielded the least.

To make the dough was fairly easy, I was slightly concerned about over/under whisking the egg whites, but I think I got the right balance.

The instructions said to roll the dough between two pieces of greaseproof paper, this sounded abit fiddly to me, so I placed the dough to chill for a while and used plenty of icing sugar and didn’t have any issues.
The stickiness of the dough did help when cutting the stars out as they stuck inside the cutter and were easily pushed out onto my tray.

For the topping I piped it on to keep it tidy and though this would be the easiest way. In total I made about 45 stars (I probably could have made about 10 more if I didn’t eat so much dough, it’s divine!)

After about 12mins I took them out, I was disappointed to see the topping of a few of them had cracked. But on the whole they looked pretty good.

20131217-225217.jpg

Taste wise, the biscuits themselves were very nice, a soft yet slightly crunchy consistency,but could have done with more cinnamon, if I remake these I would add 1-2 teaspoons more.

The topping had a nice crunch, but possibly I put too thick a layer as they were still soft underneath. Next time I would brush it on with a pastry brush. Or possibly in the shop bought versions I’ve tried they use royal icing?

They went down very nicely with my cinnamon flavoured coffee the next day … And the flavours of the cinnamon and ginger were slightly stronger 🙂

Keep an eye out for more season bakes 🙂

I can sing a rainbow…

Sing a rainbow
Sing a rainbow too.

Red and yellow and…

Ok I can’t sing…an anything .. let alone a rainbow

However, I can bake a rainbow

20131211-165442.jpg

I’ve had my eye on rainbow cookies for sometime, after falling in love with some super piñata rainbow cookies. So when a tutorial popped up on my Facebook feed a few weeks ago, my rainbow cookie obsession was back.

Being me, I couldn’t just do squarish rainbow cookies and decided it would be a great excuse to use my new cookie cutters (I got them from ebay).

To make the dough it was easy enough, some effort was needed to knead the gel colours in…

20131211-170240.jpg

Once all the layers were stacked up (I had to make an extra layer so it would fit the size of my cookie cutter, I did this by combining my left over pink and yellow to get a nice orange), and the cookies were sliced, I used my cutter to make my cookies that extra bit awesome

20131211-171100.jpg

20131211-171050.jpg

They did take a bit longer than stated in the recipe, around 20-25mins, possibly mine were thicker, and out they came

20131211-171959.jpg

Using the left over dough I made some marbled cookies as can be seen in the pictures

These were a lot easier to make than expected and they look really impressive (even if I do say so myself)

Many thanks to iced gems for a great tutorial

20131211-173225.jpg