Similar to Italian twice-baked biscotti, fekkas are a popular Moroccan biscuit. This version has a lovely citrus- and anise seed-flavoured raisin mixture throughout the centre.
- 200 g seedless raisins, chopped
- 250 ml (1 cup) water
- 2 eggs
- 110 g (½ cup) caster sugar
- 2½ tbsp (50 ml) orange flower water
- 2½ tbsp (50 ml) light olive oil
- 2 tsp finely grated orange rind
- 2 tsp anise seed
- 400 g (2⅔ cups) plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 egg whisked with 1 tbsp water, to glaze
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.
Cooling time 2 hours
Preheat oven to 160°C (140°C fan forced). Line two large oven trays with non-stick baking paper.
Combine the raisins and water in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the water has evaporated. Transfer to a bowl and set aside for 30 minutes or until cooled to room temperature. Transfer the raisins to a small food processor and process to a puree.
Use a balloon whisk to whisk together the eggs, sugar, orange flower water, olive oil, orange rind and anise seed until well combined. Sift together the flour and baking powder, add to the egg mixture and use a wooden spoon and then your hands to mix to a soft dough.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured benchtop and knead gently until smooth. Divide the dough into four equal portions. Roll a portion out on a lightly floured surface into an 18 x 23 cm rectangle about 3 mm-thick. Spread a quarter of the raisin puree over the dough, leaving a 1 cm border. Starting from a long end, roll up the dough to form a log and then place on the baking tray. Repeat with the remaining dough portions and raisin puree, leaving plenty of room between the logs on the trays. Brush each log with the egg glaze.
Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, swapping the trays halfway through baking, or until the logs are golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside for an hour or until cooled completely.
Cut each log into 8 mm-thick slices. Place the slices back on the lined trays (no need to leave any space between them this time) and bake for a second time for 30 minutes, swapping the trays around halfway through baking, or until very pale golden and crisp. Cool on the trays.
• These biscuits will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
Anneka's mission is to connect home cooks with the magic of baking, and through this, with those they love. Read our interview with her or for hands-on baking classes and baking tips, visit her at BakeClub. Don't miss what's coming out of her oven via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Lynsey Fryers. Food preparation by Trish McLeish.
Traveller teakin (tea towel) from Ponyrider. Side plates from Mud.
For more recipes, view our online column, Bakeproof: Moroccan spice.