Italian Wine Biscuits
If you've never had Italian wine biscuits before, give them a try. They're not the prettiest cookies in the world, but the subtle flavors of the red wine, black pepper and a wee bit of salt is sure to get you hooked. This relatively standard recipe originates from a family friend whose father, an Italian immigrant, made his own red wine. The flavor that homemade wine gave to these biscuits was second to none, but if you use a good hearty red like Chianti or Cabernet Sauvignon, it should yield great results.
- 2-1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and pepper. Make a well in the center and add the vegetable oil and wine. Mix thoroughly and refrigerate for about 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- To form the biscuits, pinch off 1-inch balls of dough and gently roll into a small log about 1/2-inch in diameter. Bring the ends together to form a circle and pinch to close.
- Place the formed biscuits on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush with the egg-water mixture. Bake for 12 to 18 minutes until solid and slightly crisp on the outside. Note: These cookies do not really brown, so test them after 12 minutes and time them according to your personal taste.
- Cool on wire racks and store in an airtight container.
It's important to note that wine biscuits are not really biscuits in the American sense at all - they're cookies! Try serving them with some fruit and cheese for dessert after an Italian menu. They pair really well with fortified wines like a sweet Marsala or Ruby Port.