Buon Natale!

Food, family, sunshine, shopping, wine, more food, parties, friends, more wine, rain, and then some more food. Christmas. The day people stress about and love all at the same time. I think there is no better opportunity to get in the kitchen or sit at a table and enjoy the over indulgence that is the silly season.  How fitting that this week is N for natale!

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This florentine recipe is based on the one in The Harrods Cookery Book and my mother makes them every Christmas, as well as a killer Christmas cake. I asked her to share her secrets for making them so absolutely delicious, and here  you have the recipe- a combination of nuts, dried apricots, sugar and chocolate. What’s not to like?


50g butter
75g caster sugar
50g almonds, roasted and finely chopped
25g hazlenuts,roasted and finely chopped
25ml plain flour
50g sliced dried apricots (the Central Otago ones are always the yummiest)
45ml single cream
175g dark chocolate

Melt the butter over a gentle heat and add the remaingin ingredients, except the chocolate. Stir until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is well blended.

Place a small amount on baking paper, leaving room between them as they spread as they cook. They only need 10 minutes at 180C, and then you need to act fast. Pull them out and quickly schmush around the endges with a knife so that they don’t have any gaps between the fruit and nuts.

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While they are cooling on a baking rack, melt your chocolate (either in a bowl over boiling water, or in a microwave) and spread a layer of chocolate onto the back.

These delicious Christmas treats just need to be left until the chocolate has set and can then be enjoyed with either a cup of coffee or a glass of wine. An easy decision…

Merry Christmas to all my readers and see you in the new year for the letter O. Ideas welcome!

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