Friday, 19 October 2012

Wine biscuits

At the start of the summer, my friends and I made our yearly excursion to the jazz festival at the Parc Floral in the Bois de Vincennes. I don't like jazz all that much, but I do like friends and picnics a lot.

 And peacocks.

This year, our number included a visiting Italian friend, the fabulous Marta. There are many reasons why Marta is fabulous. The one I'm going to tell you about here is that she introduced us to wine biscuits. Yes, wine biscuits. These little doughnut-shaped Italian biscuits not only contain wine, but are also designed to be dipped in wine. Twice the wine, twice the fun.

To make matters even better, Marta located, translated, and sent me a recipe for Italian wine biscuits. Here it is:

Ingredients (make approximately 40 biscuits):

150 g caster sugar, + extra sugar to sprinkle over biscuits
125 ml oil (some use olive oil, some seed oil: I find olive oil too strong for baking cakes, but, again, your choice)
135 ml white wine (or red wine)
500 g plain flour
8g baking powder
a pinch of salt
half a spoon of anise seeds (optional)

If you're using anise seeds, add them to the wine to soak. Pre-heat the oven to 180C.

Sieve flour, salt, and baking powder. Add the sugar and make the mixture into a volcano shape. Gently mix in the oil and the wine. Work the dough until homogeneous.

Section off and ball up small pieces of dough. Roll the dough into small ropes. Coil the ropes into round doughnut shapes, leaving a small hole in the middle.

Sprinkle the cookies with caster sugar and place them on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. (I found it easier to dip them into a shallow bowl of sugar, to get a good coating).

Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes and remove from the oven as soon as they get a slight golden colour on the top. Let them cool before moving them (they will be soft).

And delicious they were too.
Italian wine biscuits
Italian wine biscuits

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