Last weekend I attended London’s Food Blogger Connect 2014. An incredible event that brought together many inspirational (and some incredible successful!) bloggers to share and learn from each other. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I enjoyed myself and how much inspiration I brought back with me. SO much in fact, that before I could post again, I had to take a few days just to calm down the whirlpool of thoughts going around in my head! I feel like I have fuel for many months to come so look out for the crazy creations coming your way soon!
As well as bloggers, there were many companies showcasing their products and feeding us. I tell you – there is nothing like talking to people who have had the courage to put everything into an idea and into making it happen… it’s amazing to see their eyes light up when they tell you about it and when they can see that they like what you have created… it seems like just for a minute their hard work was worth it! What a great feeling.
I have many,many products to test and create recipes with, but the first recipe that come together in my mind for this week’s baking was for Biscotti…. which is basically an Italian biscuit that is special because it is baked twice, once as a sort of loaf and then again cooled and sliced. They are wonderful because, unlike most biscuits… they improve with time! So you can make a batch and go through it slowly for ages!
I LOVE them and have been regularly making for the past few months, both to have at home and bring out with a cup of coffee when you have visitors, or to take to family and friend gatherings as an excellent homemade food gift.
But these are no regular Biscotti… first of all I chose Liberation’s Fairtrade Brazil Nuts instead of almonds, because today is the start of the World Cup in Brazil! :), also instead of regular butter I used the incredible Moose Maple Butter (which is Maple Syrup Butter!!! Wow! aren’t the best ideas always the simplest ones?) and finally here comes the crazy twist… instead of using Amaretto to give it that alcohol punch… I used Tequila Patron’s Coffee Liquor.
Now, a word about Tequila, before you write me off as insane. Tequila is GREAT. It’s just a bit misunderstood. It is not what you remember from you university how to-get-drunk-in- the-most-painful-way-days. A good Tequila is as colourful and complex as a great Irish Whiskey or Caribbean Rum. My family and spent a few years in Central America when I was growing up, and so we’ve always loved it (even the worm swimming at the bottom of the bottle!). I remember many Christmases when the Tequila Shots would start straight after the presents at midnight. Pretty hard core, right?. But I think it was normal for most families … or was it… ?
Anyway, to this crazy recipe… which I have to say, worked really well!
– 450 gr plain flour
– 3 tablespoons of Baking Powder
– 125 gr of Moose Maple Butter
– 120 gr Fairtrade Sugar
– 4 eggs
– Zest of 1 lime
– 1 teaspoon of Almond extract
– 75 gr of Fairtrade Brazil Nuts
– 3 tablespoons of Tequila Patrol Coffee Liquor
1) Pre-heat your oven to 190C. Grease a pan for baking (or use a non-stick baking sheet like I do).
2) Beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add 3 eggs, one by one. Separate the fourth egg and add the yolk to the mixture. Set the egg white aside for later.
3) Sift the flour and baking powder slowly, until you can’t beat it any longer and then mix with your hand.
4) Add the zest, nuts and tequila and knead into a ball. If it’s too sticky add a bit more flour until you can handle it.
5) Divide in 2 and roll and flatten as below. Bathe with the egg whites.
6) Bake for 20-25 minutes. Take our and leave in a cooling wrack for around an hour.
7) Heat your oven again to 160C.
8) Slice the loaves diagonally and bake once more for around 12 minutes. Until golden.
9) Leave to cool completely (do no cover or they will get soggy) and enjoy with a strong cup of Fairtrade Coffee!
Since it’s Father’s Day and in the UK on Sunday, I plan to take this batch, with a bottle of Fairtrade Wine when visiting my husband’s Grandfather.