I don’t know what to write about.

It’s Tuesday.  Tuesdays are no longer tainted with the nostalgia of the weekend, and they fall too early in the week for musing about the next.  Most Tuesdays are utterly and undoubtedly, average.  Tuesdays are all about routine.  That means: waking rituals, working/studying, maybe a run or some errands, a standard meal, and a simple dessert … with tea/coffee … on the porch … with a book that you’ve almost finished …

I like Tuesdays.

After dinner my Mom always has tea with Italian cookies.  (Actually, she cleans first while the water boils and then has her tea.  Anyway,) That is her routine.  Sometimes routine is underrated. 

I am going to bake biscotti, which are technically Italian biscuits.  They are crispy and dry and intended to be dunked in tea/coffee.  They are not too sweet and can be a dessert, a breakfast treat, or a midday procrastination.  Biscotti are traditionally made with almonds; however, there are many different takes on these tasty treats.  Seeing as it is Tuesday, and I do love almonds, I am going to go traditional with a little extra crisp, Toasted Almond Biscotti: 

Toasted Almonds:


1 egg white
1/3 cup sugar
1 (heaping) teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg (preferably freshly ground)
1/2 teaspoon slat
1-1/2 cups almonds (unsalted)

what TO DO

Helpful Hint about separating the white from the yolk:
(I learned this from baking with my Grandmother.  We would bake so much that at least a dozen eggs would get separated before we began baking)

over a bowl …
carefully crack the egg in half
try to keep the yolk in one side of the shell
slowly toss the yolk back and forth between the two halves of the shell
the whites will fall out into the bowl
try to keep the yolk whole
it’s okay if you have some whites in your yolk (but try not to get any yolk in your whites)
after most of the whites have dropped into the bowl, save the yolk in a separate bowl  (you will need it later) 

in a bowl …
whisk the egg white until it’s all foamy
add sugar ‘n’ spice
add salt
whisk until you have a thick mixture
add the almonds
stir … keep stirring … until the almonds are fully coated

in the oven…
place a rack in the upper part of the oven
preheat to 300F
place parchment paper on a baking sheet
scoop the almonds onto the parchment
(if you have extra mixture in the bowl, don’t spoon it onto the baking sheet…trust me…the almonds mixture will bake sticky and make your life more difficult than need be…oops.)

after 30 mins…
your kitchen should be smelling wonderful
check the almonds, if they seem toasted, they’re ready
after they cool, break them apart

now you have two options:
you can either stop here and just snack these delicious critters (perfectly acceptable option) maybe while you read a book or watch the Olympics.
you can bake some toasted almond biscotti!


2 cups flour
1 (heaping) teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (preferably freshly ground)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
3/4 stick = 6 tablespoons butter
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract                                    

what TO DO

with a sharp knife…
chop the almonds

in a bowl…
whisk together flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder & salt

in a larger bowl…
cream the sugar and butter with a stand mixer (if you have one) or hand mixer (this works equally well)
cream until light and fluffy
add the egg, beat
add the yolk, beat
add the vanilla, beat
dump in the mixture of dry ingredients, ALL at once
mix well with spatula…keep going…until you have a stiff dough 
add the almonds, fold

on a baking pan…
cover with parchment paper
divide the dough in half
shape each half into a rectangle (about 9” x 3”)

in the oven…
move the rack back to the middle of the oven
preheat to 325F
bake for 20 mins
rotate the baking sheet
bake for another 20 mins or until golden and firm
remove from the oven (keep the oven on!)
when cool enough, slice the biscotti diagonally into 1/2" wide pieces (I used a bread knife)
sprinkle some cinnamon sugar onto the cut sides
bake for another 10-15 mins

store in an airtight container
enjoy with tea/coffee and company!

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