andy, myself, and the kids all love a good biscotti to dip in our cocoa, coffee, or just to eat on its own on any given day. during the christmas season my father-in-law makes something similar, however not a biscotti, he’s assured me. his rusks are my very favorite, ever. so, for eleven months out of the year, i make my version of a tartine biscotti, which make us content until we come to december when it’s time again (yay!) for jay’s swedish rusks.

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i have heard of people getting intimated with biscotti being a “twice-baked cookie,” but what i love about them is that they really are one of the simplest and easiest, and most enjoyable baked goods i’ve made. one of my favorite parts of the baking process is cutting the logs into the perfect looking biscotti pieces. sometimes i make the logs shorter, which in turn gives you longer biscotti pieces, and sometimes i make the logs really long and have cute bite-size biscotti. there is no perfect way to cut them … another plus!

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i’ve worked through a recipe from the tartine cookbook and changed a portion of it to make it just to our likings. i’ve added flavors of almond, cardamom, nutmeg and cinnamon and let me tell you… as the season is getting colder and the days are calling for more coziness with books, blankets and cocoa… this biscotti is the perfect accompaniment. they are SO easy to make.  try them out and add your own extracts, nuts, and spices to make it just how you and your loved ones like.  xoo

BISCOTTI (adapted from Tartine’s hazelnut biscotti)

· ½ cup almonds (or any nut of your choosing)
· ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very soft
· ¾ cup granulated sugar
· 2 large eggs
· ¼ tsp. vanilla extract (not imitation)
· ½ tsp. almond extract (not imitation)
· 2 cups + 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
· ¼-½ tsp. each: cardomom, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger
· ¼ tsp. salt
· 1½ tsp baking powder

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the almonds (or your choice of nuts) onto a baking sheet. Place in the oven and toast lightly just until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Remove from the oven, coarsely chop the nuts and set aside.

Reduce the oven temperature to 325ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick liner. In a mixing bowl, cream the butter until creamy, about 2 minutes. Slowly add the sugar and beat until light in color and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each egg, until smooth. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, spices, baking powder, and salt. Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture until combined, being careful to not overwork the dough.  Lastly, stir in the chopped nuts.

On a lightly floured work surface, divide the dough into 2 equal portions. Shape each portion into a log about the length of your baking sheet (or shorter if you want longer pieces), and about 2 inches in diameter. Set the logs on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart.

Bake the logs approximately 25 minutes until they are set to the touch and lightly brown on the top.  Remove from the oven and carefully place on a cutting board and cut on the diagonal into slices, as thick or thin as you’d like. Return the slices cut side down to the baking sheet. Bake until the edges are lightly toasted 5-7 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and very carefully flip each biscotti to lightly toast the other side. Return to oven and bake for another 5-7 minutes. At this point, if you need them a little more baked you can turn the biscotti right side up and return for a final few minutes to the oven.  When they are golden brown and toasted well, remove from the oven and allow them to cool and crisp on the baking sheet.  Once cool enough to the touch, place in a jar and enjoy them with steaming cocoa or coffee, tea or nothing… you won’t be disappointed!

1 Comment

One Response to baking: biscotti.

  1. Dede Goddard says:

    Anna, sounds delicious and makes me a little sad. Your Nana loved biscotti and I know she would have so enjoyed her granddaughter’s home made biscotti. She would have one everyday with a cup of tea…missing her more lately as her birthday is coming up.

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