An easy recipe for traditional Italian almond biscuits also known as Biscotti di Mardorla is hard to come by. This recipe has come from years of “eves dropping” on pastry chefs who keep their recipes well guarded.
We used our Thermomix to produce the almond dough (which is more like a paste). This recipe calls for raw whole almonds and raw sugar, however if you do not own a thermomix, you will need to substitute the whole almonds with almond meal and icing sugar. This mixture can easily be mixed by hand.
These popular Italian biscotti are soft in the center and usually finished with a green or red glace cherry. A Italian Pasticerria (cake shops) will produce these biscuits using a piping bag with star shaped nozzle, however for simplicity’s sake, we will just roll them. They are very popular in Italian culture for gifting and are an essential component of the sweet platters served for special occasions.
We have used our favorite Amarena cherries that are doused in a dark tangy cherry syrup by Fabbri. You will be eating them by the spoonful. They are delicious served on a good vanilla bean ice cream. Find these cherries at any good Italian grocery or deli.
We love these biscuits because they are gluten free, very easy to bake and the beez neez of Italian biscotti!
We suggest sweet liqueurs such as strega, cointreau or amaretto for this recipe.
To make approximately 15 biscuits.
You will need:
200 grams almonds (almond meal if you are not using a thermomix)
140 grams raw sugar (pure icing sugar if you are not using a thermomix)
1 egg white
10 centimeters lemon rind (or grated rind of 1/2 lemon if you are not using a thermomix)
15 Amarena cherries or glace cherries or whole almonds.
Icing Sugar to dust.
Add the whole raw almonds to the Thermomix mixing bowl. Chop for 10 seconds / speed 10. Scrape down the sides, then chop again for a further 10 seconds / speed 10.
Scrape down the sides and transfer into a separate bowl.
Add the raw sugar and lemon rind to the mixing bowl (don’t worry about rinsing the bowl). Apply lid and measuring cup. Chop on speed 10 / 20 seconds.
Combine the almond meal, liqueur, egg white and sugar. Apply the lid and measuring cup. Combine ingredients Speed 2.5 / 45-50 seconds.
Remove the mixture from the bowl. The almond biscotti dough will be very sticky, however easy to roll using wet hands.
Use a baking tray large enough to space biscuits 3cms apart and line with baking paper.
Using your hands roll each biscuit in your palms approximately roll to the size of a 20 cent piece. Place on tray
Dust with icing sugar (or milled raw sugar). This will assist in caramalising the biscuit during the baking process.
Place a cherry on each biscuit.
Set aside at ambient room temperature to dry for at least one hour. You can prepare them a day ahead and leave at room temperature overnight.
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and bake for 12-15 minutes, until biscuits are golden brown.
Once the biscuits have cooled…(if you can wait that long)…enjoy!!