Christmas speaks comfort food and hot chocolate

I love comfort food.

Lots of chocolate, butter, sugar and warmth is what I seek when I hear of Christmas. I really don't know why... I guess it's just instincts.

I love the sound of hot chocolate simmering on the stove, the smell of freshly toasted chestnuts, the comfort of a blanket wrapped around me with a cup of hot chocolate and marshmallows by my side. I could go on and I'm sure you would too...

I really needed this bread and butter pudding, chocolate walnut biscotti and a thick, rich cup of hot chocolate. The sudden change of weather caused a cold so I was mostly snuggling on the couch and watching television.

I was thinking of Christmas, so as soon as I was feeling better I make a chocolate bread and butter pudding, chocolate and walnut biscotti and a thick hot chocolate.

Yes, lots of chocolate.

Biscotti is a traditional Italian twice baked cookies which mainly relies of egg, flour and sugar. The traditional biscotti has no butter of oil, that's why it's quite tough.

This means that its perfect for dipping...

The bread and butter pudding was soft, moist and very chocolate-y. Perfect with a little dust of cocoa and a spoonful of ice-cream of double cream.

I was shattered when I saw the Newton shooting on breaking news

... my thoughts and prayers go towards the families and children that have faced this horrible experience and I really hope that the government learns something from this.

I hope that you have a wonderful Christmas and cherish the things that mean the most... family.

Chocolate walnut biscotti
Makes 12 biscotti

2 1/4 cup plain flour
1 1/4 cup caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1/2 cup walnuts, coarlsy chopped
3 eggs
2 yolks
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Mix the flour, caster sugar, baking powder, cocoa powder and walnuts in a large bowl.

Whisk eggs, egg yolks and vanilla in a separate bowl.

Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until it forms a even dough.
Knead the dough slightly and flatten to form a 25cm long rectangle.

Bake for 20 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes or until cold enough to handle.
Cup into 1 inch slices and place on a baking tray, bake for 25 minutes of until crispy.

Hot chocolate
Serves 4
4 cups whole milk
1/2 cocoa powder, sifted
50g bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup cream
1 tsp vanilla

Place all the ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and simmer, stirring until slightly thickened, serve warm.

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