Thursday, October 28, 2010

Chocolate Biscotti

It's time to start thinking of Christmas.
I don't ever stop thinking of Christmas but if you're more normal than me then it's time to start.

I know Halloween is just a few days away and it seems more fitting to be thinking about candy corn and costumes. 
But trust me. 
Christmas is just around the corner. And it never hurts to be extra prepared.

You can go ahead and prepare yourself by cooking up an extra big batch of these biscotti and freezing them.
They'll be a perfect counterpart to the rich, buttery, soft shortbread on your cookie tray.

Or buy a pound of coffee (from Jus Juiced, of course) and pair it with a bag of these beauts for the coffee lover on your list, or the person that's impossible to shop for, or the kids or me..... not really, I already have lots of coffee and biscotti....(sorry, you'll have to get me something else.)

Or just make them for yourself. 
If you don't drink coffee, savour them with a big glass of milk.
Put some vanilla buttercream on them and they're like Oreos grown-up.

But trust me. Christmas is coming sooner than you think.

P.S. I didn't forget the butter in the recipe. Apparently authentic biscotti doesn't have butter. Who knew?

Chocolate Biscotti
Makes about 2 dozen
Source: David Lebovitz

For the biscotti:
2 cups flour
¾ cup top quality cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp kosher salt
3 eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
1 cup toasted almonds, coarsely chopped
¾ cup chocolate chips

For the glaze:
1 large egg
2 tbsp coarse sugar

good quality chocolate, melted for dipping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a small bowl sift together flour, baking soda, cocoa and salt.
2. In a large bowl beat together eggs, sugar, vanilla and almond extracts. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients, mix in nuts and chocolate chips until the dough just holds together.
3. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. On a lightly floured surface, form the dough into 2 logs the length of the baking sheet. Transfer the logs to the baking sheet.
4. Gently flatten the tops of the logs.  Beat the egg and brush generously over the logs (you won't use it all). Sprinkle each log with the coarse sugar and bake for 25 mins or until the dough feels firm to the touch.
5. Remove and allow to cool for 15 mins. On a cutting board use a serrated bread knife to cut the cookies into ½'' slices. Lay the cookies cut side down and return to the oven for 20 - 25 minutes until the cookies feel mostly firm.
6. If desired, cooled cookies can be half dipped in chocolate and left until the chocolate hardens. Store biscotti in an air tight container.

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