These rustic traditional biscuits from the Italian region of Calabria are my all time favourite. Heady with cinnamon and clove, orange, lemon, chocolate and honey, they are most often made at Christmas. This recipe makes 70 biscuits, which seems like a lot, but the dough is easiest to work in this amount. No matter, they last for at least 3 months in a sealed container, or share with your loved ones. —Liliana
Mix all the biscuit ingredients, except for the flours, in a very large bowl.
Add the flours and fold through with a wooden spoon, as the mixture thickens your hands are the best utensils to get this job done. Fold up and over until you have a slightly sticky and thick dough.
Cover with cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Dust a clean surface with a little flour. Cut off around 2 cups worth of dough at a time and roll into an oblong shape around 1½ cm thick.
Trim the edges and cut diagonally at 5cm intervals one way, and then the other to make diamond shape biscuits.
Place onto prepared oven trays allowing 2cm gap in between for spreading and bake for 15 minutes or until slightly golden. Remove and set aside on wire racks to cool. Repeat with all the dough.
Put all the icing ingredients into a saucepan over medium
heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar, then bring to the boil. Reduce heat and
simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until it is reduced by half.
Working quickly, brush the hot icing mixture onto the biscuits,
painting back and forth with a pastry brush, covering the tops
completely. You will have more icing than you need, but I find that
making a smaller amount leads to the mixture seizing. If this happens
just add a tbsp of water, put back on a low heat and stir until smooth
Store in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
I am an author, cook, traveller and proud Mama of two boys. I have published three books - 'Easy Home Cooking Italian Style', 'Food for Sharing Italian Style', and 'The Sweet Life - Easy Home Baking and Sweet Treats.' My books reflect my Italian heritage. I also write fiction and feature articles.