sharing recipes from one generation to the next
Economy was always upper most in mind when my Mum chose what she baked as treats. She chose biscuits and slices that could be made without the addition of eggs, in which she could substitute a cheap cooking margarine for butter, that used simple dry ingredients such as oats and coconut, or jam she had made over the summer period when there was a fruit glut. Such were the ways of housekeeping in the 1950s.
Mums recipe for “Lady’s Kisses” is nowhere to be found, but what I loved about her kisses was that the jam she used to sandwich the halves melded into the biscuit creating a chewy centre.
I looked for a plain biscuit recipe in my cookbook library, a recipe that looked strong enough to contain the jam without collapsing. Economy was not a consideration so in the end I adapted a Tess Kiros recipe from “Limoncello and Linenwater” for Italian style Baci di Dama.
I used sweet cultured unsalted butter, not margarine, spelt flour and a mixture of almonds and pine nuts to achieve a great result, but different to those Mum used to make! I am known for being contrary!
These biscuits are so good that they could be served plain, without filling.
180g castor sugar
60g pine nuts
120g raw almonds, unblanched
200g plain flour ( I used spelt flour )
Preheat the oven to 160 C. Line 2 oven trays with baking paper.
In the jug of your processor, blitz the nuts into a fine meal.
Cream the butter and sugar until white, then stir in the nuts and flour until well combined. Chill the mixture for 30 minutes.
Roll small pieces of the dough in balls and place on the oven trays with a little room to spread. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
Cool slightly then sandwich with a generous dollop of berry jam