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Like everyone else I baked during those weeks. Dozens and dozens of cookies later, I was totally happy with the result.
Many of us have a craving for a little something to nibble along with morning coffee or for a sweet morsel, just a bite after dinner.
Krakatoa bites, macaroon-style biscuits, fit the bill perfectly. While not overly sweet these are intensely flavoured with ground almonds, spices and chocolate. They do, of course, contain fats and sugars but in modest quantities and the serving size is small.
80g dark chocolate baking chips or melts
80g dark cane sugar
160g ground almonds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp each ground cloves and grated nutmeg
2 large egg whites (size 7)
30g icing sugar, more if needed
Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
Melt the chocolate (chocolate baking chips and chocolate melts are the easiest varieties to melt).
Place the baking chips in a clean and dry microwave-proof bowl. Heat on 50% power in 30sec-40sec bursts until melted. Stir until smooth, allow to cool a little, then stir in dark cane sugar. Mix the ground almonds and spices together in a bowl. Set aside.
Beat the egg whites in a small bowl until soft peaks form. Gently fold the beaten egg whites and the ground almonds and spice mixture into the melted chocolate. Chill in the fridge for an hour or so to firm up.
Heat the oven to 180degC.
Sift the icing sugar into a shallow bowl.
With damp hands, roll the dough into walnut sized balls and toss each ball in icing sugar to coat well. Place 4cm-5cm apart on a lined baking tray as they do not spread much — resist the urge to flatten them.
Bake for 15-17 minutes until just firm.
Leave to cool on the baking tray for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to a week.
- Joan Bishop