Biscotti is a twice-baked Italian biscuit. They are very crisp and perfect for dipping in coffee. I have been wanting to make biscotti for a while now. The problem is, my expectations for biscotti are incredibly high – the last time I ate biscotti was from the Italian Centre Shop in Little Italy, and it may have been the best thing I have ever eaten. The time before that, an 80-year-old Italian lady who I had as a patient gave me some that she had baked. So basically, I didn’t think I had a chance.
Eventually I knew I had to give it a try. So I found this recipe in the Eat Well Section of Girl’s Gone Child (a blog I’m a tad obsessed with, and you should be too) and adapted it slightly, knowing it would be amazing. The process was not really as difficult as I imagined. I would compare it to a combination between making cookies and bread.
The result was incredibly good. It is the perfect winter treat, along with a cup of hot coffee or earl grey tea and an old episode of Grey’s Anatomy. The flavor of Cardamom is light, but adds an interesting twist. You could make so many variations of this recipe with different nuts, dried fruit, spices and extracts. I think next time I’ll switch out some flour for cocoa powder and add hazelnuts – yum. The other great thing about Biscotti is that it keeps for about a month in an airtight container (or, you could keep in freezer).
(ignore my nail polish… oops!)
Almond Cardamom Biscotti
Adapted from Eatwell
1 1/2 cups Whole Almonds
2 1/4 cup All Purpose Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
3/4 tsp Ground Cardamom
3 Eggs (room temperature!)
1 cup White Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread almonds out on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for five minute. Let cool, and coarsely chop.
2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and cardamom. Set aside.
3. Preferably using an electric mixer, beat together eggs, sugar, and vanilla. Beat for about four minutes, until the mixture forms thick ribbons when the beaters are lifted (should be about the consistency of a thin pancake batter). ** Having the eggs room temperature is essential for this step, so if you forgot to take them out of the fridge, run them under hot water for a while.
4. Stir in the flour mixture until just incorporated.
5. Fold in the chopped almonds.
6. On a parchment paper lined baking sheet, form the dough into two 3-inch wide loaves, about 3 inches apart. The dough will be very wet and sticky. Wet your hands before touching it to keep from sticking. Smooth the loaves with wet hands and the back of a spoon.
7. Bake for 25 minutes, or until lightly golden. Remove the loaves from the oven and let cool on wire rack (still on paper) for about 10 minutes.
8. Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Using a bread knife, cut the loaves into 1/2 inch – thick cookies and place on baking sheets.
9. Cook for 10 minutes, flip cookies over, and cook for 10 more minutes, until golden brown.
10. Cool completely (or get way too excited and eat one right away… your choice).