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Cookies with Nuts
Biscotti alla palermitana
Biscotti alla Palermitana (Sicilian chocolate nut balls flavored with rum and instant coffee)
Originated from: Palermo, Sicily
Occasion: Any time
Contributed by: Adapted from an Italian cookbook published in the 1960s

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2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
2 teaspoons instant coffee
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup sugar
2 cups nuts, chopped
2 tablespoons rum
1 1/4 cups butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon water

For coating
about 1/4 cup icing sugar


Preheat oven to 325 F degrees.

Mix flour, coffee, salt, cocoa, sugar and nuts.

Sprinkle with rum and water.

Cut in the butter until thoroughly blended.

Place in a container. Cover with plastic wrap.

Keep in fridge for 1 hour.

Take about 1 tablespoon of dough and shape into a ball using the palm of your hands.

Arrange on a well-greased cookie sheet or one lined with parchment paper.

Bake until done -- about 14 to 18 minutes.

Roll in icing sugar while warm.


These cookies are difficult to get right. They taste good, but they can crumble easily. Photo: Mary Melfi.

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