When it comes to food friends, cookies and milk are a slam dunk.
I really can’t pick a favorite between Chips Ahoy! and Oreos. But then again, I haven’t met a crumbly creation I didn’t want to drown in a chilled white wave.
Plus, there’s nothing like gulping down every last drop in the glass only to find the scrumptious sediment on the bottom. Right?
Well from that childhood treat comes an adult version, and it’s courtesy of my gal, The Barefoot Contessa.
She was giving tips on easy Italian desserts, and one of them called up on a variation of that dunkable duo.
Her suggestion calls for a sweet Italian dessert wine called Vin Santo. I found a version at a small wine shop near my house. It was about $15 for thin bottle – but it’s worth it.
I was immediately hooked.
Several years ago, I made a batch of biscotti – a recipe from Giada De Laurentiis. It called for cranberries and pistachios, a Christmas-colored theme. Biscotti are pretty easy to make, really.
The name comes from the fact that they are twice baked, which gives the cookie a dry texture that makes them easy to store for a long time.
For this special pairing, I wanted a biscotto that would draw upon the notes in the wine, almond and lemon specifically.
I found a recipe on-line from the brilliant Rocco DiSpirito, and did what I do best – tweak the crap out of it. His plan called for 3 to 4 dozen, and since I don’t have a wine cellar under the concrete slab that holds up my home, I halfed it.
Here you go:
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 whole egg, and 1 yolk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tablespoon almond extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 tsp cinnamon
Zest of 1 lemon
Heat the oven to 375.
I used my microplane, which is usually put to work on citrus, to grind off a very fine layer of the biscotti’s bottom. It was still nicely tanned, but I got rid of the shade that would make even the staff at Hawaiian Tropic look away.
Tip: For the ultimate cookies and milk experience spike your milk. Try a shot of Disaronno (Italian almond liqueur) in your milk. It’s like velvet. It’d be great with the biscotti recipe from above!