I love giving and sending homemade and thought-about gifts and cards, so the idea of sending or giving someone biscuits or something similar from the children really appeals, and biscotti is great as it keeps really well for a week or more, so making sending or baking in advance more practical.
I've taken to looking in local charity shops when I happen to go past, for pretty jars which I buy when I see them in preparation for future baking sessions! If buying similar jars new, you'd have to pay a hefty price tag, but as you can see, I pick them up for around £1 each so making these presents very cost-effective too! These jars are ideal for biscotti, but also great at Christmas when making sweet treats to give to grandparents, teachers, etc.. from the children.
The biscotti themselves are virtually fat-free and, depending on taste, you can also reduce the sugar quantity below considerably to make them even healthier.
150g plain, sifted flour
75g golden caster sugar
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of salt
handful of hazelnuts (chopped)
handful of plain chocolate chips or chunks
1 beaten egg
1 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
Set the oven to 200 degrees centigrade
Put all the dry ingredients into a bowl and stir together
Mix the egg, milk, vanilla extract together in a jug and gradually add to the dry mixture with a fork until it comes together in a sticky dough
Take the dough and kneed on a lightly floured surface until it can be formed into a soft, non-sticky ball
Flatten the mixture and place it onto a greased, parchment paper (see picture) and bake for approx 20-25 minutes until lightly golden on top
Take the log out of the oven and allow to cool for a while (to ease cutting) whilst lowering the temperature of the oven to 150 degrees
Cut the log into approximately 1.5cm slices
Place the slices back on the baking tray and bake for a further 15 minutes until golden
Remove, place on wire rack to cool, and then place in an airtight container until ready to serve. They should be good to eat for a week or so post baking.
Once you've finished, place them in one of your charity shop jars and decorate with a ribbon and gift-tag. There you have it, an easy, thoughtful and eco-conscious gift :-)
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