Cream of wheat biscottis

Don’t they say necessity is the mother of invention?

These biscottis were devised after I realized that it was a good idea for me to consume fortified cream of wheat on a regular basis, due to its iron-rich component.

However, the thought of starting the day with a soupy porridge was not all that attractive.

A biscotti that one could (or not) dip into a hot cup of good Italian coffee or a cappuccino, on the other hand, sounded a lot more palatable.

Here is a cream of wheat based biscotti that is extra crunchy and brittle, flavored with a typical Lebanese pastry spice, mahlab and sprinkled with a no less typical topping for baked goods, toasted sesame seeds.

Feel free to use cinnamon or any other spice that you love and vary the ingredients that are mixed in as well. You can also use pearl sugar for the topping.


INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 Large eggs
  • 3/4 cup raw (turbinado) sugar (or white sugar)
  • 1 cup of cream of wheat cereal
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 3 Tablespoons of milk powder
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of mahlab
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup of golden raisins
  • 3/4 cup of roasted pecans, chopped coarsely
  • 1/3 cup of toasted sesame seeds

METHOD:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Place the eggs in a mixing bowl with the sugar; beat lightly with a whisk to combine well; place the bowl over a saucepan filled halfway with simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the mixing bowl does not touch the water or the eggs will cook in no time. Whisk gently the mixture from time to time until the eggs are lukewarm to the touch; remove the bowl and start mixing the eggs and sugar until the mixture turns very thick and light in color. While the egg mixture is thickening, place the flour, salt, cream of wheat, baking powder, mahlab and cloves in a bowl and mix well with a whisk.
  3. As soon as the egg mixture is ready, sift the flour mixture over the eggs and slowly resume mixing until the flour mixture disappears; add the raisins and pecans and mix a few more seconds to incorporate.
  4. Pour the batter into a rectangular pan lined with parchment paper; spread out with a spatula to cover the entire surface of the pan. Sprinkle the sesame seeds all over. Bake for 30 minutes or until the batter is golden and dry.
  5. Cool for a few minutes then cut into 1/2 inch slices with a serrated knife. Dry in a 200F oven for 25 minutes, checking halfway through to make sure the cookies are not too toasted. Serve.

NOTE: The cookies will keep for at least a week in a tight container. In Lebanon, cream of wheat would be called farina or coarse semolina.


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17 Comments

  1. Posted June 28, 2011 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I never thought to use Cream of Wheat – it’s brilliant!

  2. Posted June 28, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    I’ve never been a fan of cream of wheat as a hot cereal, its a texture thing with me. These biscotti however would be an entirely different story, they sound just great!

  3. Posted June 28, 2011 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

    A clever way to get round the problem, Joumana and a lovely recipe. I love biscotti and have managed to convince myself they are not fattening in any way.

  4. Posted June 28, 2011 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

    My doctor says I am anaemic and should take a vitamin for the iron deficiency. I think I would rather eat these instead :)

  5. Posted June 29, 2011 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    Fabulous biscotti! Nice flavors. I especially like the addition od mahlab.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  6. Posted June 29, 2011 at 1:15 am | Permalink

    Dunno i can get this cream of wheat, biscottis looks super delicious and wonderful..

  7. Posted June 29, 2011 at 3:58 am | Permalink

    I love biscottis so I will give this a try. They make a great quick desert served so you can dip them in a sweet wine :-)

  8. Posted June 29, 2011 at 4:09 am | Permalink

    Well, if necessity is making you invent this kind of thing, then bring it on!

  9. Posted June 29, 2011 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    Terrific idea.
    Haven’t had Cream of Wheat in years!
    LL

  10. Posted June 29, 2011 at 6:44 am | Permalink

    These sound fantastic! Wow, I love cream of wheat. Reminds me of snowy mornings…

  11. Posted June 29, 2011 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    I like the way you think! You’ve turned a nutritious, but kind of dull breakfast item into something worth waking up for!

  12. Posted June 29, 2011 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    Love the look of your biscotti…so crispy and you cut it so thin! That’s a nice cup to drink your coffee from too!

  13. Posted June 29, 2011 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    What a fascinating use for cream of wheat! Your biscottis look divine, so crispy looking :)
    *kisses* HH

  14. Posted June 30, 2011 at 1:13 am | Permalink

    what a fantastic recipe!!! love the mahleb too.

  15. Posted June 30, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    That is an interesting version of biscotti…

  16. Posted June 30, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    I’m surprised how tasty these turned out to be!!

  17. Posted June 30, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    These look fabulous! They are the kind of cookie I’d love with a cup of tea!

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