Bringing Back Biscotti

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a great Father’s Day Weekend. My dad, or as I like to affectionately refer to him as, Papa Swan, is currently in Alaska – Denali to be exact – traveling around like a vagrant with my mom. Oh the joys of retirement…Either way, I wasn’t able to spend it with him so my weekend mostly consisted of a long, exhaustively hot run and working at my other job.

In another life, you know back when I still lived with my parents (THOSE were the days) my mom and I used to bake biscotti quite frequently. We had a jolly good time (PS, I’m British this morning)  hanging out in the kitchen and testing out different flavor combinations. It had been a while, and I was feeling nostalgic for my long lost parents so  in an effort to be more refined (I am a lady after all) I decided to get up at the ass crack of dawn today and make some of these tasty delights.

Per the wikipedia, biscotti originated in Italy, and are essentially twice baked cookies typically enjoyed with coffee. Here in the states, they are mass produced and usually picked up at your local Starbucks for about 3 bucks a pop. Jokes on those guys, ‘ cause you can make a whole damn batch yourself for that price. I feel like biscotti had a resurgence around the time coffee shops started to become ‘cool’, and then they lost their appeal. Well I’m bringin’ back biscotti!

The recipe is super versatile, only differentiating for different flavor variables. Feel free to mix & match and experiment – there are tons of options. This morning, I did a triple chocolate almond and an orange cranberry version. I’m going to put the respective pictures side-by-side below so you get the idea of what it will look like.

Biscotti Two Ways: Triple Chocolate Almond & Orange Cranberry

Yields:

Difficulty: Easy-ish

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup cold butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons liquid
  • 1/2 teaspoon flavored extract
  • 2 cups mix-ins (nuts, dried fruit, etc.)

That is the basic recipe. My particular recipes are as follows:

Triple chocolate – add 1/4 cup cocoa powder, 1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, & 1 cup sliced almonds to dry mix, 2 tablespoons coffee for liquid and almond extract to wet mix. Easy Melt white chocolate (optional)

Orange Cranberry – add zest of one orange (about 1 tablespoon) and 1 cup dried cranberries to dry mix, 2 tablespoons orange juice and vanilla extract to wet mix

Directions (Triple Chocolate Almond on the Right, Orange Cranberry on the Left):

  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Mix dry ingredients (aside from the butter) together in a bowl 
  3. In separate bowl mix wet ingredients, set aside.
  4. Cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients until crumbly
  5. Stir the wet mix into the dry and incorporate until dough begins to stick.
  6. Divide the dough in half and shape into two  1 foot by 3 inch longs on lightly greased cookie sheets
  7. Bake for 35 minutes
  8. Take the biscotti logs out of the oven and transport to a cutting board, being careful not to break the logs
  9. Using a sharp serrated knife, cut even slices in the biscotti about an inch apart.
  10. Place the biscotti back on the cookie sheet and bake for an additional 25 minutes.
  11. Allow to cool.  If desired, drizzle with chocolate goodness.

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