Fabulous Florentines…

I am in christmas baking mood at the moment and these Florentines have been a hit with my work colleagues. Cheap, cheerful and yummy – they’re just what the doctor ordered on a cold, dreary December day!

This recipe is from The Great British Bake Off – How to Bake.

They are really easy to make and look impressive. The only problem when you make them, is trying to stop yourself from  scoffing the lot before you give them away!

Makes 12

50g Blanched Almonds

50g Chopped up Glacé Cherries

25g Chopped mixed peel

50g Large Sultanas/raisins/crystallised fruits

25g Plain flour

75g Unsalted flour

75g Golden Syrup

100g Dark Chocolate (70% cocoa solids) or Milk chocolate

2 Baking sheets, non stick, greased or lined with baking paper

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4. Prepare all the ingredients so they are ready to use. Chop the almonds fairly finely, roughly chop the cherries/crystallised fruit and combine with the sultanas and peel. Sift the flour

Put the butter and golden syrup into a medium pan and melt gently. Remove from the heat and stir in all the prepared ingredients (not the chocolate).

Put a tablespoonful of the mixture onto one of the prepared baking sheets and gently flatten it out to a round about 7cm in diameter. Repeat with the rest of the mixture to make 12 biscuits, spacing well apart to allow for spreading.

Bake for about 8 minutes or until a good golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes or until firm, then carefully transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely (the biscuits are very fragile so handle with care).

To finish, put the chocolate into a  heat proof bowl and set over a pan of steaming hot but not boiling water (don’t let the base of the bowl touch the water). Leave to melt gently then remove the bowl from the pan.

Spread a thick layer of melted chocolate over the flat underside of each Florentine. If you like, use a serrated icing spatula or a fork to make a wavy pattern in the chocolate. Leave it to set, chocolate side up, on a sheet of non-stick baking paper. Store in an airtight container.

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