Things to Bake:
The nights are drawing in and Christmas is coming. A lovely time to bake and make treats. So here are a few ideas that make great snacks for when people visit. Or great gifts for people for Christmas.
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees. Line a large (or two smaller) baking trays with greaseproof paper.
Take the whites of two medium eggs and mix until they stand in peaks. Then very slowly stir in 6oz of white caster sugar and 6oz of ground almonds. Then add three teaspoons of Amaretto or similar, and mix.
Once all the ingredients are mixed in together, scoop half a teaspoon of the mixture roll in your hand and place on the paper. (It will at least double in size). You can gently press down with a fork to add lines. Repeat until all the mixture is used up. Then bake for 10-15mins until gently golden brown on the top and lightly golden on the base.
Melt 8oz of plain chocolate (either in a microwave, or in a heat proof bowl over hot water).
Add 175ml of whipping cream.
Take a teaspoon full of he mix and roll the mix in either cocoa powder, icing sugar, chopped toasted almonds, desiccated coconut (or a different topping of your choice.)
You can also add flavours to the chocolate if you wish. For example Amaretto, brandy or rum. Or dipped in white or dark chocolate.
To make the Vegan equivalent use Vegan friendly chocolate and swap the whipping cream for 1 medium, ripe avocado which has been pureed (make sure it is mixed in well).
Place 130g plain flour, 110g of grated Parmigiano Reggiano and 100g of butter and mix in a food processor.
Add two egg yolks and mix until combined.
Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and roll out.
Use a cutter to cut out about 5cm biscuits (this will make about 25).
Place on a lined baking tray and brush each biscuit with egg yolk.
Chill for an hour, before baking for 10-15mins .
If you want to make any of these things for gifts remember the truffles need to be kept refrigerated and all should be eaten within three days of being made. As well as gifts, the amaretti biscuits are great for using in other recipes, such as trifles.