Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Almond Biscotti

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I was lucky enough to get three recipes from the sweet Chef Mike, kind of a triptych -- today's is the last, which follows up on this one and this one, using the vanilla extract you made at home.

Almond Biscotti
Adapted from Williams Sonoma's Savoring Desserts
Yields 2 loaves, 12 servings each

  • 1 cup toasted almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • vanilla extract, to taste (I would guess you'd want at least a tsp)
  • almond extract, to taste (you can also use the more expensive almond tequila)
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 + ½ cup cake or all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt

You could also add dried cherries or cranberries to this for a yummy twist.

Pre-heat oven to 375F.

In a small bowl lightly beat the eggs and fluid ingredients together. Set aside.

In a large bowl (or in the bowl of your fancy-schmantzy electric mixer, if you have one) combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt with a hand mixer (or the aforementioned fancy-pants electric mixer). Beat until blended -- should take about 30 seconds. Gradually add the egg mixture and beat until a dough forms, adding almonds about halfway through.

With floured hands, divide dough in half. On a lightly floured surface roll each half of dough into a wide and not too tall loaf. Place loaves fairly far apart on baking sheet covered in parchment paper or a silpat (I covet a silpat!).

Bake the biscotti loaves at 375 for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes, then cut each loaf into ½-inch thick cookies, along the bias.

Reduce the oven temp to 325F, and help the oven come down in temperature by holding the door open until an oven thermometer registers 325. Bake the cookies, laid flat on the baking sheet, for 10 minutes more.

Enjoy with coffee and/or homemade Jack Daniel's ice cream!

Variation for cakier, less dry biscotti: omit egg yolk and lemon zest, add 2 oz butter, bring total flour to 2 cups (or 3/4 cup almond meal with 1.25 cups cake or all purpose flour), total sugar to 1 cup, total salt to 1/4 tsp.

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