Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Persian Hazelnut and Cardamon Biscuits

I am having a love affair with all things Middle Eastern and edible.  Hence I made this these biscuits.  I adapted this recipe from one given me by my charming colleague Julia, with additional inspiration from my Greg and Lucy Malouf cookbook Saraban.

They're extremely short, super nutty and have a lovely hint of spice.  They're supposed to be crescent shaped, but mine ended up a bit smooshed.  And I have been eating them, about six smooshed biscuits at a time!

  • 240g Butter
  • 1 1/4 cups Castor sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups Plain flour
  • 1 1/2 cup Hazlenut meal
  • Cardamon (about half a teaspoon)
  • rind of one orange

Heat the oven to 170 degrees (my recipe said 180, but my fan forced oven was too fast and the first tray of biscuits over-cooked, so I adjusted it down).  Cream the butter until it's pale and smooth.  Add the sugar and beat thoroughly until it's absorbed - up to five minutes.  Add about half the flour and hazlenut meal, and the cardamon and finely grated rind, and beat through until too stiff for the beaters.

Tip the mixture onto the bench and add the remaining flour and meal.  Work in with your hands.  It will make a very short dough, and will remain all crumbly.

Pick up a walnut sized amount of dough and squeeze  in your hand, until it forms a solid sort of log shape.  Then turn the edges in to form a crescent.  Place about 2 inches apart on a baking paper lined tray and cook for 15 minutes.  Check during cooking to make sure the biscuits don't over cook - they shouldn't be brown when they're done, but remain lovely and pale.

Once cooled, dust with icing sugar, and serve with coffee or tea.

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