These nutty biscuits from Matthew Evans are spiced with ground ginger, nutmeg and cloves. You can make the sweet treats using only almonds, but the addition of hazelnuts adds a wonderful texture.
- 125 g unsalted butter, softened
- 150 g (⅓ cup) caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 200 g (1⅓ cups) plain flour
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground cloves
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 125 g whole hazelnuts
- 24 whole raw almonds
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then beat in the egg. Combine flour, spices, baking powder and ½ tsp salt, then fold into butter mixture.
Pulse hazelnuts in a food processor until a fine yet crumbly texture; you don’t want it fine-like commercial hazelnut meal. Fold hazelnuts into biscuit mixture.
Line 2 trays with baking paper and place about 1 tbsp mixture at regular intervals, leaving enough space for each biscuit to spread. Press an almond into each biscuit to flatten the dough and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. (Remember, the hazelnuts will have already made the mixture a dusky colour.) Remove trays from oven and allow biscuits to harden before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
As seen in Feast magazine, Feb 2012, Issue 6. For more recipes and articles, pick up a copy of this month's Feast magazine or check out our great subscriptions offers here.
Photography by Alan Benson.