Apr 10, 2013

Molinetti w/whole rye

Not bad. Even though I altered flour proportions significantly.  I do believe in the power of the whole grain. But I appreciate the qualities of a fine flour. I've been a health food fanatic numerous times. I've been a health food expert. Probably had an eating disorder. I blame it on jet-lags. I didn't go to any secret meetings or anything, but I had to de-learn to think about eating healthy to enjoy eating at all. That's OK, learning and de-learning is my second name, second and third, I mean.

My love for Italy turned out to be the best cure. And...growing up, I hope.

So, back to the grains. The recipe called for 500 g (little more than 1 pound) white flour, 80 g (3/4 cup) oat flakes and 65 g (little more than 2 oz) buckwheat flour...in case you or I want to try it in the future. I know, Italians very much like their "farina 00" (the finest flour) and they are right to do so. I can't buy it here. I've heard different stories about local substitutes. I don't know if I believe them. All I know is that no other flour sounds as good as "farina doppio zero". Almost like an Alfa Romeo or Ferrari.

Italian biscotti. Always crunchy and never too sweet. The taste is simple but never plain. Usually with no other flavors besides: butter, milk, cream, grains, sugar, cocoa. Italians like to call them "breakfast cookies". And they do eat them in the morning, adults with cappuccinos, bambini with milk or orange juice. Like these Molinetti. Hardy and grainy, with the taste of grains and butter, that stands well on its own and plays well with jams and sweet spreads (Nutella). Dipped in cappuccino, espresso or milk.

These are the thickest biscotti I've ever made. I have a tendency of rolling dough too thin. This time, the instructions said 7mm (.3 inch) and mine didn't go any below the mark. If you make them too thin, they become brittle. I really wanted to feel the weight of the cookie in my hand and my mouth. Feels good.

"Molinetto" means "windlass"* in English, from which the original cookie took its form.

Recipe adapted from Mulino Bianco

time: 30 min preparation + 2 x 20 min baking = 1hr 10 minutes
makes about 70 biscotti (3-4 cm/1-1.5 inch in diameter)


180 g (1 1/2 sticks) butter room temperature
120 g (1/2 cup) cane sugar (brown)
80 g (1/3 cups + 1 Tablespoon) regular sugar
1 egg
80 ml (1/2 cup) whole milk
300 g (2 cups) white flour
225 g (2 cups) whole rye flour (maximum, any more and you would be biting into a stone)
120 g (1 cup) instant oats 
2 teaspoons (8 g) baking powder
1 pinch salt

1 Tablespoon granulated sugar for finishing


Preheat oven to 180C/350F (fan forced function). Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a food processor, blend oats till fine.

In a large bowl, sift together flours, blended oats, baking powder and salt.

Using a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter with sugars for 3 minutes on medium/high speed. Add egg and milk. Continue beating, scarping bottom and sides of the bowl with a spatula, for another 3 minutes. Add flour mix, lower the speed and blend for about 1 minutes.

Transfer 1/3 of the dough onto a rolling board, sifted with a little flour. With a rolling pin, roll dough till 7mm (.3 inch) thin. You don't have to move the dough at all, just roll. Cut out your favorite shapes. Not too big, not too small. Cut-outs are a good idea. 

Transfer your shapes onto the baking sheets (lined with paper), about 20-25 per sheet. They won't grow during baking. Sprinkle with sugar on top. Place two baking sheets in the oven, one in the top 1/3, the other in the bottom 1/3 of the oven. 

Bake for 20 minutes, switching and rotating sheets half way through baking. They should be only slightly browned. Take ready cookies out and transfer them onto a cooling rack. Proceed the same way with the third sheet. Or freeze the rest of the dough if you've had enough of...everything and it's time to sit down for a coffee and a cookie.

No comments:

Post a Comment