Back to the kitchen

I finally recovered from my cooking slump if you can call it that. I was in the kitchen for the most part of yesterday making cookies and biscotti. I made my favorite almond-anise biscotti which turned out in huge slices because my logs are huge too :-)

Almond-Anise Biscotti

3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons aniseed, ground
1 large egg white

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F.
Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Sift flour, baking powder and salt into medium bowl.
Mix sugar, melted butter, 3 eggs, vanilla extract and ground aniseed in large bowl.
Add flour mixture to egg mixture and stir with wooden spoon until well blended. Mix in almonds.
Divide dough in half. Using floured hands, shape each dough half into 13 1/2-inch-long, 2 1/2-inch-wide log.
Transfer both logs to prepared baking sheet, spacing apart.
Whisk egg white in small bowl until foamy; brush over top and sides of each dough log.
Bake logs until golden brown (logs will spread), about 30 minutes. Cool completely on sheet on rack, about 25 minutes. Maintain oven temperature.
Transfer logs to work surface; discard parchment paper. Using serrated knife, cut logs on diagonal into 1/2-inch-wide slices. Arrange slices, cut side down, on same baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes. Turn biscotti over; bake until just beginning to color, about 8 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool. Store in airtight container at room temperature.

Next is white chocolate chip-macadamia nut cookies. I've had the ingredients ready for over a week but just couldn't get to it till yesterday.
I found out I have a tray of ground beef sitting in the freezer so I made spicy red sauce for thin spaghetti. I used whole plum tomatoes with basil for my sauce base and added hot mustard powder, sun dried tomatoes, parsley flakes, sharp cheddar cheese and lots of grated Parmesan cheese and added a little sugar to balance the flavors. 

I served the pasta with a simple all-veggie Asian salad with some fried wontons and that completes my kitchen activity yesterday :-) not bad huh?


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