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TOAST | Traditional Tuscan Biscuits with Olivia Cavalli Williamson

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Join chef and food stylist Olivia Cavalli Williamson to learn how to make two of Tuscany's most iconic biscuits.

About this Event

During this workshop you will create crunchy cantucci for dunking in Vin Santo, and moreish ricciarelli doused in icing sugar. These beautiful biscotti make perfect gifts at Christmas, that can be simply wrapped in bags and tied with string.

Cantucci date back to Roman times, when armies would pack them in their bags for sustenance - their hard, dry texture meaning they kept well on long marches into battle. Nowadays, you'll find people all over Italy dipping them in their coffee and Vin Santo so as not to break a tooth.

Ricciarelli, on the other hand, owe their melt-in-the-mouth texture to the soft ground almonds used to make them. Legend has it that Sienese Ricciardetto della Gherardesca was the creator of these snowy lozenges, shaping them in a way that reminded him of the slippers of the Sultans he'd met during his crusades to the Middle East.

Olivia is a freelance cook, food stylist, writer and photographer with a keen interest in Italian food culture. She learnt how to make pasta from her Italian grandmother who has taught her the art of using simple ingredients, repurposing leftovers and the importance of a home-cooked meal. She has worked in Italian and London based restaurants making pasta and a range of other dishes. Italy provides an endless source of inspiration for Olivia and she is passionate about sharing her love of Italian cuisine with others.

To take part:

  • Ensure you have a device with a webcam and microphone
  • Download the Zoom app in advance
  • Set up your Zoom account:
  • Join Zoom Meeting via the link in your order confirmation email.
  • You can either have your video screen and microphone on or off - note that if it's on, people will be able to see and hear you.
  • TOAST may record video content and capture images from virtual workshops. By participating in the events, you consent to being filmed and/or photographed for such purpose. If you do not wish to appear, please do not turn on your camera.

Baking equipment:

  • 2-3 baking trays
  • Greaseproof paper
  • Hand whisk (electric preferable)
  • Grater
  • 2 large mixing bowls
  • Wooden spoons
  • Small spoons
  • Clean kitchen towels
  • Serrated knife

Ricciarelli Ingredients (approx 12-16):

  • 2 large egg whites
  • Drop of lemon juice
  • Pinch of salt
  • 230g sugar
  • Zest of one lemon or orange
  • 1 tsp almond essence
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 200 - 250g ground almonds
  • 40g icing sugar, plus more for dusting

Cantucci Ingredients (approx 12-16):

  • 120g plain flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 50g almonds, skin on
  • 80g sugar
  • 1 whole egg + 1 yolk
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp demerara sugar


    TOAST is a unique lifestyle brand renowned for its thoughtful, contemporary design and commitment to traditional textiles and craftsmanship. Seasonal workshops and gatherings aim to bring together a like minded community and foster creativity.

    We know that this changing landscape is extremely difficult for makers and creatives alike. We would like to show our support for the craft community by collecting donations for Crafts Council UK. These donations will help to fund their Let's Craft campaign – helping to create Craft Packs for children most in need of support. The aim is to ensure that these children do not miss out on the health, wellbeing and educational benefits of creativity

    On registering, please choose how much you would like to donate (minimum £1, our suggested donation is £5). Please note, a small Eventbrite fee will be deducted from your donation amount (£0.49 + 6.5%).

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