Fruity & nutty rusk biscuits

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My good friend Anussha’s mint masala chai recipe has been extremely popular on Shivaay Delights. So I asked her if she could share another one of her wonderful recipes that I got to devour, when I went round to hers for a play date with the children.

Anussha is such a warm and loving person, with an extremely caring soul. She plans what she is going to make for us when we get together. Though I tell her not to worry there will always be something delightful to eat!

This time there was no exception! These twice baked rusk biscuits are scrumptious and took me back to my childhood. It’s the aniseed flavour in these gorgeous rusks that made me recall red sweet aniseed balls, that I would stash away in my heavy school ruck sack

Plus the added benefit is that your getting your fruit, nuts and seeds intake all in this sweet cookie!

You can choose nuts, dried fruits and seeds of your choice. Make them simple or more festive! One recipe I am sure you will come back to again and again!

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Thanks Anussha…much love D xxxx

INGREDIENTS

250g butter melted
500g self raising flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups bran flakes crushed or weetabix
2 cups nuts and seeds of your choice such as sunflower seeds, poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds
1 cup dried fruit such as chopped apricots,dried dates and dried figs
1 tsp heaped aniseed seeds
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup natural yoghurt

METHOD

• Preheat oven to 180°c.  Add all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl

•Stir in the melted butter and yoghurt

•Make small round balls and arrange on a lined baking tray

Place in the oven tray bake for 15-20 minutes

Then flip the rusks and bake for an extra 5 minutes

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Rusks ready! Have yourself a cup of tea and dunk a rusk!

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Pistachio & coconut biscotti

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It’s the weekend and I’m up again at six! Recently this has been happening quite a lot, though it gives me a little me time before the day really starts. I have a mug of masala chai in one hand and I think to reach out for the tin of biscotti that I satisfyingly filled yesterday!!! No, No, No! It’s too early?! Oh go on then only one! No one will know they’re all fast asleep hehe!!!!

This is my own recipe for biscotti and I wanted to incorporate an Indian feel to this wonderful Italian biscuit. Pistachios and coconut are very much used in Indian sweets and nuts are used in biscotti so I took the best from both and came up with these light, tasty, sugary treats. I’m enjoying one as we speak….

INGREDIENTS

80g unsalted shelled pistachios chopped
200g plain flour
50g desiccated coconut
120g granulated sugar
1 level tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon powder
3 eggs lightly beaten

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METHOD

1. Preheat oven to 180ºc/350ºf/gas mark 4. Throw in all ingredients into a mixing bowl or food processor apart from the eggs. Mix well. Slowly add the eggs and combine thoroughly

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2. The dough will be quite soft and wet, if it is very loose and wet then add a little more flour. Line a baking tray, separate the biscotti mixture into 2 flat loaves and bake for 25 minutes

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3. Take out the tray and let the loaves cool completely. Meanwhile keep the oven on. Once cooled, slice into 1.5cm thickness strips, place back on the lined baking tray on their side and bake for a further 10-15 minutes

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4. On the second bake the biscotti should be hard if you want them slightly crispier bake for a little longer

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Almond and chocolate biscotti

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Biscotti also known as biscotti di Prato and cantuccini. Twice baked Italian biscuits from the Italian city of Prato. Wonderful dunked in a strong coffee or cappuccino and they keep for some time, so can be enjoyed for longer. So many variations can be made and I shall be making up some more flavours soon, maybe with a twist! so stay tuned!

INGREDIENTS

100g almonds chopped roughly
100g Chocolate chips or gravel size chocolate chunks
250g plain flour
2 1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
150g caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extra
3 large eggs lightly beaten

METHOD

1.  Preheat oven to 180ºc/350ºf/gas mark 4.  In a large mixing bowl, throw in all the ingredients (apart from the eggs) mix well. Slowly stir in the beaten eggs and form into a dough using your hands.  If dough is a little wet add a bit more flour, but dough should be very soft

2.  Divide dough into two, and shape into two flat loaf shapes of about 3 cm thickness and 15-18 cm length.  Place both loaves on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper and bake for 20 minutes.  Leave the loaves to cool completely but leave oven on for second bake

3. Once cooled cut the loaves into 5mm slices and rebake again for a further 10 minutes this will crisp up the biscotti.  Cool on a wire rack.  Serve with a chocolate fondant or coffee or both! Indulge!

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Adapted from Baking magic, Kate Shirazi with Susannah Blake