Biscuits d’anchois à la Royale

These easy-to-make biscuits are a good nibble with dry sherry or dry white wine.

Ingredients

  • 170 g/ 6 oz plain flour
  • 85 g/ 3 oz chilled butter, diced
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tsp anchovy essence

For the Anchovy Cream

  • one 60-g/ 2-oz can of anchovy fillets, drained
  • 1 shelled hard-boiled egg
  • 60 g/ 2 oz butter
  • 3 tbsp double cream
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • a few drops of red food dye, such as cochineal (optional)

Method

In a food processor, blitz the flour with the butter until they crumb. Add the egg yolks and anchovy essence and process briefly, adding a little water through the feeder tube until a stiff dough forms. Scrape out on to cling-film, roll up and chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/ gas 6. Roll the pastry out on a floured surface until about 3 mm / inch thick and use a pastry cutter to cut out biscuits. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for 10–15 minutes, or until crisp and golden. Allow to cool on a rack.

Make the anchovy cream: in the food processor, blend the anchovy fillets, egg, butter, cream and cayenne pepper. If you have some red food dye, add a few drops to give a pink colour. If you are feeling tricky, pipe this on to the biscuits; if not, spread thinly with a knife.

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