Thursday, 26 September 2013

Biscotti di Regina--Take I

For my 100th post and for my 1st anniversary I wanted to present to you...
                                        Biscotti di Regina.

Biscotti di Regina is an Italian cookie.
The name means 'The Queen's Cookie'.

Served at weddings or special occasions.
The origin some say are from Sicily.
This recipe is from Saracena (a village in Cosenza); which came from the book:
Cucina Di Calabria.  Author: Mary Amabile Palmer

Growing up I never heard of Biscotti di Regina.
My mom never made them.  I wasn't familiar with them until I started learning about all the different types of cookies.

These cookies are a bit dry and therefore to be eaten dunked with your beverage.
Vino Santo (a type of wine), coffee, tea...

The name biscotti means twice baked.  These are not.

Some say these cookies, in order for the sesame seeds to stay on should have either an
egg wash or a milk wash. 
This recipe states not to do either.  I used a milk wash.
Some say these cookies should be rolled into small logs (as this recipe says to do) and
others say to roll up into small balls (I rolled into balls).

The recipe states I could either use butter or vegetable shortening.  I chose butter.
It also states I could use orange or vanilla extract.  I chose pure orange extract.
I found the dough to be quite dry not sticky as the recipe indicated it would be.
Therefore I added a almost 2 Tbsp more of milk.
Recipe stated to use 1/4 tsp salt.  I used none because I use Salted Butter.
The recipe states to use 2  1/4 cups of flour, I should have used 2 cups.
Lastly, I adjusted the baking time.  I used 350F instead of the 375F requested.

This does not yield a lot of cookies.  I made 20 cookies.

Biscotti di Regina  -- Take I

2  1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1  1/2 tsp baking powder
6 Tbsp butter
1 large egg, lightly-beaten
2 tsp pure orange extract
1/2 cup sesame seeds, untoasted

*Preheat oven to 350F.
Line your baking sheets/pans with either Sil-Pat mat or parchment paper.
*In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt, if using.
*In a small bowl, whisk together egg, milk, and orange extract.
*Gradually add the flour mixture to the egg mixture.
*Mix together either using a spoon or using your hand (I used my hand).
**If dough is too dry, like mine was, sprinkle a bit more milk.
**If dough is too sticky, add another Tbsp of flour.
*Remove dough and knead until all is together.
*Break a piece of dough and roll into a small ball (size of a walnut) and roll into the sesame seeds.
*Flatten slightly and place onto baking sheet/pan 1-inch apart.
*Bake for 20 minutes or until sesame seeds are slightly-golden.
*Cool onto a wire-rack.

**Storage:  In an air-tight container for up to 1-month.

Thank you for being with me for 1-year.
Happy Anniversary Regina Biscotti.

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