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These delicate biscuits use a mixture of glacé fruit and nuts in a sweet honey caramel, generously coated in bitter dark chocolate.
Preparation time: 45 minutres
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Cooling time: 30 minutes
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Butter a baking sheet.
Finely chop the mixed glacé fruit, orange peel and cherries and place in a bowl; add the sliced almonds. Tip the flour into the bowl and stir carefully by hand to separate the pieces of glacé fruit.
Heat the whipping cream, sugar and honey until simmering; stir over low heat for 2–3 minutes, or until the sugar dissolves. Using a wooden spoon, carefully blend the hot cream mixture into the glacé fruit and flour. (If desired, the Florentine mixture could be kept refrigerated for 2 days.)
Using a teaspoon, put small mounds of the mixture on the baking sheet placing them well apart. Flatten with the back of the spoon into thin 3 cm discs. Transfer to the oven and when the discs start to bubble, remove and cool for about 30 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 160°C and bake the discs for another 10 minutes. Cool and transfer to rack.
Temper the chocolate: Coarsely chop the chocolate. Place 2⁄3 (200 g) of the chopped chocolate in a bowl; melt over a bain-marie until the temperature reaches 45°C on a cooking thermometer. Remove the bowl from the heat and add the remaining chocolate, stirring until the temperature drops to 27°C. Return the bowl to the bain-marie, stir gently and reheat the chocolate to 32°C.
Using a pastry brush, apply a layer of tempered chocolate to the flat side of each Florentine; tap each one on the work surface to release any air bubbles in the chocolate. Spread with a second layer, using a spatula to remove any excess chocolate. Harden the Florentines at room temperature.
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