As a Mom you are always trying to put the little touches into your child's life to make them feel loved and cared for. It is about safety and security but it is also about doing that little extra for your child that only you will do. My son is German, mostly English and a bit Italian specifically from the North. I am German and English and Dutch so I do not get the Italian thing at all even though I have lived in both Florida and Italy. I don't get the sensitivity and the gravitious that comes with being Latin. I force myself to be sensitive to my son. And it is very true Latins love their Mothers. So with that in mind I try to keep up with the expectations a Italian child would have of a non Latin parent.
My autistic non verbal Latin child has managed to stretch infant massage into his preteen years. The guy chases me down with the bottle of lotion each day as he expects a nice massage to help him relax in the evening. I try to explain to him he is a little old but he is certain no one is to old for a massage. I should mention I have never had a massage in my life and definitely not from my parents. But times are changing and my son is quite bright and manipulative and each and everyday he wrangles a massage out of me. It could be worse. He could be smoking cigarettes. I only massage his neck, shoulders, legs and feet. But my son has the routine down. And inevitably I am faced down with that lotion bottle. I have intentionally ran out of lotion and he just goes and gets dish soap. Anything that can lube him up. Often I tell him his wife is going to have quite a challenge on her hands. And my son, just takes my hands and puts them on his shoulders as if to say, "Get to work Mommy. I need my massage." Mind you this started out as infant massage that has totally run a muck.
My son doesn't have a weight problem. Probably because if he did it would only be a health concern for me and I would love him unconditionally. But he doesn't. He has the rare ability to eat one apple struddel and not touch another one. He eats only what he is hungry for and nothing more. Now occassionally he will get into chocolate but we don't eat milk chocolate but dark chocolate and that can only be eaten very limitedly without having negative side effects.
So every year between thanksgiving and Christmas I go into Biscotti production. Italian children love their biscotties. I have to say I have grown quite fond of them as well but they are my son's holiday treats.
Defintion of Biscotti
Recognizing I am raising a Latin child from Northern Italy I have made him Biscotti since he was a little child. Actually I made it not only for him but the entire family ate it. And from late November until after New Year's I would bake Biscotti for my son. Biscotti is a 2,000 years old cookie that has been a staple in Italian society. And we had surveys as to which was the best Biscotti recipe for over ten years. I make other authentic Italian meals for my son and I will provide links below as well as links to other recipes I have published but this is the best Biscotti recipe I have been able to come up with in over a decade.
If you have never made Biscotti be preapred to ruin a few batches. It takes a bit of practice, skill and talent but it is well worth it.
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of butter
2 tablespoons of vanilla
4 cups shifted flour
1 tablespoon of baking powder
Box of Confectioners Sugar
Dark Chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups Nestle powdered Chocolate
1/2 teaspoon Dried Cayenne Pepper
Nuts Optional. I leave them out because my son doesn't particualrly like them.
I beat the sugar and butter together and then add the eggs and vanilla. In another bowl I mix the flour and baking powder with the Hersey Chocolate Powder and mix well. Then I add everything else in with the exception of the confectioners sugar. I cover and chill for 3 hours in the refrigerator so the dough is a bit firm.
After the dough has settled. On a greased cookie sheet I place the dough in two long 2 inch wide by 2 inch high loaves and I place the loaves as far apart as I can get them on the cookie sheet because they do expand and tend to touch each other. I form it with my hands and the dough must remain cool while you form it or it will fall. Once done I cook at 375 for 20 minutes and I take them out and allow them to cool until the can be readily handled. At that point I slice 1/2 inch diagonal slices and I lay them down on a separate baking sheet. Once I have sliced both loaves I put the slices Biscotti back in the over at 375 degrees for another 15 minutes until slightly toasted. I take them out and allow them to cool on a rack. Once cool I dust them with Confectioners sugar.
I end up with about 9 dozen cookies which last quite a long time with my son who eats one every three days.
Here is a Video of Homemade Biscotti
I know the Biscotti seems like a lot of work and hard and quite frankly it is. The dishes alone and the two baking sheets are a pain. If I may suggest, use parchment paper on your baking sheets to minimize your mess. It has saved me hours in the kitchen.
But learning the art of making Biscotti is well worth it. It stays good for quite a while if stored properly and it is very satisfying. And it beats the heck out of having the old scone for breakfast when you can have a Biscotti in the morning, with your coffee or even with your tea. It I'd a Holiday treat for the whole family.
Italian Links And Recipes
- Authentic Italian Tomato Sauce
Informative hub on how to make authentic Italian tomato sauce.
- Corn Salad Recipe
Informative hub on how to make summer corn salad.
- Efficient Grocery Store Shopping
Informative article on how to download coupons and efficently grocery shop.
- Perfect Salad
Informative hub on how to make German salad dressing and how to make the perfect salad.