Wednesday, February 06, 2013

COFFEE & BISCOTTI


Let the day begin                                                                                                                                                         Mans

I guess like most of you, I find that if I don’t kick-start my day with cuppa coffee, I might be Mr. Grumpy for the rest of the day.  When I hand grind my coffee beans in the mornings with my splendid retro grinder, I can’t help, but get jolly excited for my morning fix. Sometimes the smell, and the sound of the grinding beans, with the promise of wotz to come, is better than the coffee itself. I suppose life is like that sometimes.

How cool is that grinder ?                                                              Mans
I’m not a bloke, who gets very snooty about what goes into my pie hole, as long as it is made with love and care, yet when it comes to coffee, I don’t mind spending a bit/lot more to get 'the good stuff'. With all the little roasting outlets that are popping up these days, there is plenty of ‘the good stuff’ around. Here in my home town (Cape Town), ‘Truth Coffee’ is what I buy most.

They say, "there is an art/science to making a good cuppa." They say, "do not to keep your beans in the fridge." They say, "you need to use up your roasted beans quickly before they go stale." They say, "do not to store your beans in a clear glass jar'. They actually say, a whole sack of stuff …. I’m still trying to figure out who ‘They’ are?
Wot I say is - "Grind your own beans.  Use a stovetop percolator, if you don’t have a fancy machine (Bodums/plungers just aren’t the same). Percolate your coffee at a low heat. If you are gonna have milk, heat it up or your coffee might be cold". Thatz about as much of my own opinions, as I can take. The bottom line is, a danm good cuppa is a jolly fine thing indeed.
Coz I’m feeling awfully bad about my snootiness, I hereby offer you this Biscotti recipe to go with whatever coffee you might like, be it with hot or cold milk, from a bodum or instant. 
Oh, and by the way, I do rather like good old Ricoffy. It reminds me of growing up.

Biscotti

Slicing before the second stint in the oven            Mans

Wot you need

2           cups cake flour (sieved)
3/4        cup sugar
1 1/2     tsp baking powder
1           pinch of salt
1           cup roasted almonds
3           eggs
1 1/2     tsp vanilla extract
1            zest of an orange



Wot to do

Turn your oven onto 160°C, pop the nuts in for about 10 – 15 mins for a roasting. When they smell toasty, they’re done.
Put all the dry ingredients including the cooled nuts into a big bowl and mix. In another bowl whisk the eggs, then add the vanilla extract and orange zest. Now it is time to slowly add the egg mix bit by bit to the dry mix. Keep mixing until you have a clumpy dough.
On a surface dusted with flour, roll the dough out into 2 equal size logs. Flatten the logs slightly and transfer them onto a baking tray lined with baking paper, don’t forget to allow for the logs to expand a bit. Pop em into the oven for 35 – 40 mins
When they have completely cooled, cut them into thin slices on the diagonal. Place the slices onto the baking sheet and bake for another 10 - 15 mins or until they are golden and crispy. Leave to cool on a rack.

A classic starter kit                                                                       Mans



Yum                                                                                                      Mans

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