Over the holidays, somebody's mom made me some killer biscotti, and I got to wondering why I had never made any at home before. This dreamy chocolate biscotti recipe was altered from a recipe I found on smitten kitchen, with some tweaks. The obvious ones for me were to substitute hazelnuts for almonds and fit some dark chocolate chunks in there. My less inspired inspiration was to put some chopped dried cherries in the dough. In my effort to make these biscotti tooth-chippingly hard, I reduced the cherries to, more or less, char, which definitely didn't help the flavor. I guess there's a reason people don't put dried fruit in biscotti.
As far as technique goes, wax paper or parchment paper really does wonders for making sure you don't get biscotti dough club hands when trying to work the dough into a cylinder. I formed each half on a large piece of wax paper, cut the paper down the middle, and used each sling to transfer the dough to the baking sheet. Easy as cake. Once my personal effects finally show up here in Boise (tomorrow!), I will definitely be making these guys again. Stay tuned for another, completely different batch of biscotti I made earlier this month, which I'll post here soon.
- 3/4 cup toasted, blanched almonds
- 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
- 2 1/2 cups flour, plus flour for work surface
- 1/2 cup Dutch-style cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon espresso powder
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/3 cups sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread hazelnuts on baking sheet and toast about 10 minutes, until lightly browned. If hazelnuts are not blanched, toast them until the skins begin to crack, then remove them from oven and wrap them in clean linen or cotton towel (not terrycloth). Rub hot nuts to remove most of the skin. Set toasted nuts aside.
- Sift the flour, cocoa, espresso powder, salt, baking soda and baking powder together and set aside.
- Beat eggs lightly, just until blended, in mixing bowl with whisk or in electric mixer. Remove two tablespoons of egg mixture to small dish and set aside. Beat sugar into remaining eggs until blended. Stir in flour mixture to form soft dough. Stir in chocolate chips and chopped almonds.
- Divide the dough in half and place one portion on a work surface covered with floured wax paper or parchment paper. With floured hands, pat it into a cylinder about 2 inches in diameter and 12 to 15 inches long. Repeat with the second half of the dough. Cut the parchment paper and, using the paper as a sling, roll the dough into a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat with the remaining dough. Brush the tops of both rolls with the reserved egg.
- Place in the oven and bake about 20 minutes, until firm to the touch. Transfer to a cutting board, let cool for 5 minutes, then cut on an angle into slices one-half-inch thick. Return the slices to the baking sheet, laying them on their cut sides, and return them to the oven. Bake another 25 minutes, until they are crisp and dry. Allow to cool completely before storing or serving.