As the school holidays continue, don’t forget the best entertainment for kids is still a baking session. Try my scrumptious chocolate and almond biscuits. They have a crisp outer shell and their centre is soft and gooey.
They are fun and easy to make with your children or grandchildren. My girls loved mixing the ingredients together, rolling out the balls and the best bit, licking out the bowl at the end. Their chewy, chocolate, macaroon quality satisfies the strongest chocolate cravings.
This recipe makes 30 biscuits. They can be kept in an airtight container for a week (if they last that long). If there are any concerns about the nuts, ground almonds can be replaced with extra flour and the almond extract with vanilla. This still creates a delicious bite.
6oz/170g golden caster sugar
8oz/227g margarine or butter
7oz/198g plain flour
2oz/57g ground almonds
2 drops of almond extract
1 large free range egg
6oz/170g choose any combination of white, dark or milk chocolate chips, chopped almonds or chocolate raisins.
Toasted, flaked almonds or chocolate buttons to decorate.
● Heat the oven at a moderate, gas mark 4 or 180°c.
● Line two baking trays with parchment/baking paper or grease well with a little butter or sunflower oil.
● Place the margarine or butter in a mixing bowl with the sugar and beat till smooth.
● Into the mixture add the egg and stir until it is incorporated well.
● Then put in the flour, cocoa, chocolate chips or nuts, almond extract and ground almonds and stir until the mixture comes together in a ball. If the mixture seems a little wet add a small amount of flour or if dry, a splash of milk or cold water.
● If you have the time the mixture can be chilled for 30 minutes in the fridge. This is not essential and does not affect the taste or cooking time but does make the biscuits slightly easier to roll.
● Roll the mixture into balls, slightly flatten and place on the baking tray with a small gap in between to allow for the biscuits to spread.
● Decorate the biscuits with the almonds or chocolate buttons.
● Put in the hot oven for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the biscuits seem crisper on the outside. They will crisp up more when cooling.
● If you can wait. Leave on a cooling rack until just warm and then enjoy.