For diabetics and ‘low-carbers’ alike; one of the things you miss most is that baked, ‘cakey’ texture. Although cooked like biscuits; these almond stars have the mouth-feel of dense cake. You can obviously make this dish without them, but the variation in texture provides a welcome change, and rolling out dough is such a rare treat nowadays as to be seized by the horns at every opportunity!
Start with the biscuits. Cream 2oz unsalted butter with 2oz Xylitol. This is the only sweetener I have found which is 100% natural, doesn’t lose its sweetness through cooking & behaves exactly like sugar in cakes. It’s granulated, so creams exactly the way a traditional caster sugar would. I can’t praise it enough!
Please note – always use your hands for making cakes / biscuits. The warmth of your hands makes the butter so much more workable and it’s the only way to truly ‘feel’ for lumps. Your hands are nature’s whisk. Use them!
Once butter & sugar are light and fluffy, mix in 4oz ground almonds. Roll dough out quickly to prevent it sticking to the roller. Cut into whatever shapes you like and bake for 20 mins in a moderate oven until the surface starts to go golden. At this point, they’ll still be very soft to the touch, but will harden up as they cool.
For the mousse, add to a mixing-bowl half volume of mascapone to double-cream. Judge all volumes by eye as to ‘how much mixture you wish to end up with’. Pour a little hot water onto your sweetener to prevent it being grainy, then add to the mix. Sieve in a good tablespoon of cocoa powder & a splash of orange-oil or essence. Whisk up until thick and heavy, checking finally for sweetness & flavour. Make any adjustments necessary e.g. more orange, sweetener or cocoa to preference.
Spoon into bowls and top with a little whipped cream and toasted almonds. Cool in the fridge until your biscuits are room-temperature; then dig in!
Thanks for reading and bon ap!