Nutty ‘n Nice (in the kitchen twice)

While the worst of my flu has thankfully passed, the cold that started it all just won’t go. With the chillier weather these past few days, staying indoors out of the winter sun and wind just seems to be the smart thing to do. The downside of being smart that way though, is the creeping tendency to go a little nuts – cabin fever replacing flu fever.

Thoughts of going nuts generally leads to thoughts of therapy, and, being me, the thought of nuts and thoughts of therapy led my thoughts to the kind of therapy that includes nuts: pottering in the kitchen making Brittle and Biscotti.

The Almond Brittle I’ve shared before really is such a quick win, and by following my own advice, and taking if off the stove sooner after adding the nuts, it turned out even better than the first batch (which was pretty delicious to start with).

Apart from that change, I also got creative with the baking tray, which is larger than I need it to be for the amount of syrup and brittle. Dad’s stapler was almost exactly the length of the width (got it?) of the tray, so I covered it with tinfoil, added a thick layer of scrunched up foil to close the gap that remained, and created a weighted “wall” to hold the mixture back in a smaller area on the tray, and keep it nicely in shape.GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA

Brittle success and happily I was starting to feel a little less nutty myself (well, no nuttier than I’m usually told I am). But I needed more…

Biscotti is something mom has been asking for for a while (with the expectation of the traditional almond type), but it posed two challenges: One – I had just used almost all the almonds to make the brittle, and Two – according to mom, my sister-in-law makes “the best biscotti I’ve ever eaten”, which made this a real pressure test for me. Being the budding kitchen genius that I am (ha ha!) I solved both problems at once, choosing the path of least resistance by making Tender Biscotti with Macadamian Nuts and Chocolate Chips.

With a very different texture to regular Biscotti, and completely different ingredients, no direct comparison could be made with my sister-in-law’s (truly yum) version – and mom loved mine too!

It really is good – not nearly as hard as traditional Biscotti, and gently sweet with the macadamians and chocolate chips. I only tweaked the recipe I used slightly, but the tweaks definitely made a difference, and added to the all-important yum factor. I will share the step-by-step recipe and photos next time (there will definitely be a next time).

And, yes – the therapy worked. Sweet teeth (mine and mom’s) are satisfied, I’m feeling happier, and – for the time being, at least – the only nuts in the house are in the sweet jar and the biscuit tin.Brittle and Biscotti(and in the tummies of course…)


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