Posts Tagged ‘chocolate’

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching Everyday Italian on the Food Network, and saw Giada making biscotti.  She whipped up these lemon almond numbers that looked really good, so I decided that I’d make them too!

Now, I may not appreciate Giada’s insistence on pronouncing every Italian word with an Italian accent, but she makes some delicious looking food.  My boyfriend, who I will lovingly refer to as Bikenut, went crazy over these cookies.  He seriously loved them, saying they were the best that he’s ever tasted, and even went raving about them to my friends at our monthly Aluminum Chef gathering.  With such a great response, I decided to use the same basic cookie recipe but add chocolate instead of the lemon to make Chocolate Almond Biscotti.

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The ingredients, less a tablespoon of homemade vanilla extract.

I was really surprised at the number of ingredients that were used.  It was far fewer than I imagined, and these cookies could not be any easier to throw together.   To top it off, there’s not really much of a mess to clean up afterward — something Bikenut appreciates.  I mentioned to him that I was making the biscotti today and he said, “I hope they turn out as good as the first ones!  And don’t destroy the kitchen!”

Dirtying only two bowls, the beaters of the hand mixer, a measuring cup and a couple of measuring spoons, I was able to get the biscotti logs ready for the oven.  The dough is extremely sticky, and the tip about wetting your hands before attempting to form them is an excellent trick!

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Biscotti logs, going in the oven for 35 minutes.

While the biscotti was baking, I sat back down to do some work.  Ahh, the advantages of working at home;  I can take a 15 minute break and whip up some yummy treat, then let it bake while I respond to email and the like.  Sooner than I knew, the timer was beeping.  The first bake was done!

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Cooling after the first bake. "Biscotti" apparently means, "twice baked" in Italian.

While waiting the five minutes for the cookie logs to cool, someone came knocking at the door.  My neighbor’s new girlfriend (I assume) had locked herself out of their apartment and wanted to know if I had a chair that she could borrow so she could climb through their bedroom window.  Funny how you end up meeting some of your neighbors.

With Annie safely through the window and my step-stool returned, it was back to the biscotti.  The logs had cooled enough to be handled, but the chocolate was still warm, so it dirtied the bread knife I was using a bit while I was slicing the logs into the half-rounded cookies and left chocolate-y streaks on the cut-side of some of the cookies.

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On the sheet, ready for the second bake.

Back into the oven for another 25 minute bake.  You can see in the picture above that the cookies are still somewhat moist, particularly towards the rounded tops.  The second bake drew out all of that moisture, leaving me with a yummy, crunchy, crumbly chocolate almond biscotti!  Now all I need is a nice latte to dunk them in.

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Chocolate Almond Biscotti

(adapted from Giada de Laurentiis’ “Almond and Lemon Biscotti“)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup roughly chopped almonds
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips (bittersweet, semi-sweet, or combination)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F.
  2. Line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, add eggs, sugar and vanilla extract.  Beat until mixture is a pale yellow color and all the sugar appears incorporated.
  5. Combine the flour mixture a third at a time with the egg mixture, beating until just blended.
  6. Stir in almonds and chocolate chips, then let dough rest for 5 minutes.
  7. Divide dough in half and place on a baking sheet.
  8. Wet your hands with water and form each half of the dough into a log, approximately 9″x3″.
  9. Bake for 35 minutes, then remove to cool for 5 minutes.
  10. Slice logs into 1″ thick cookies and place cookies cut-side down on the baking sheet.
  11. Return to oven, bake for an additional 25 minutes.
  12. Remove from oven, cool completely.  Enjoy!