I, for one, love biscotti. I think it’s the perfect compliment to a cup of coffee. But the almond biscotti you get at Barista outlets in Delhi is almost cardboard-y. Has no real flavour and they’re pretty stingy with the almonds. So I’ve been dying to try out various versions of biscotti, beginning with the classic almond and then moving on to others… Plus, I have a whole lot of dry fruit lying around that I wanted to use up!
So this is the first one…
1. This is the only photograph I have because I baked these just before AK returned from a road-trip on a Sunday night. I was also cooking dinner for my cousins and I couldn’t possibly multi-task!
2. The original recipe is from Smitten Kitchen, used as is. I will be trying out some variations soon – cranberry+almonds and fig+walnut are on the list.
3. Excuse the sketchy Tim Horton mug. It’s from a whole bunch that my Dad brought from China and AK loves them for the sheer amount of coffee each mug can hold!!
What I used (for about 35 pieces):
3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
10 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (home-made… more about that in another post)
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 cup whole almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped
1 egg white
I pre-heated my oven to 150 deg C and lined my 13×9″ baking tray with butter paper.
Next, I sifted the flour, baking powder & salt together. Using the beater, I mixed the sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla & orange zest until combined. Using a wooden spoon, I stirred in the flour mix and then the almonds.It should look like cookie batter, not too runny but not too dry/ crumbly either. It should stick to your hands if un-floured.
Using floured hands, I divided the dough in half and shaped them into two logs on the baking sheet – about 12 x 3 inches each. I whisked the egg white with a fork and then used a pastry brush to brush it on top and sides of the logs.
I baked them for about 25 minutes, until they were golden and had expanded (like cookies). I allowed these to cool completely, about an hour.
Transferring them onto the counter, I used a serrated (bread) knife to cut them diagonally into approx 3/4 – 1″ slices. I arranged them – cut side down – on the same baking sheet (minus the butter paper). I had to do this in 2 batches as my oven isn’t big enough.
I baked these at 150 deg C (pre-heated) for approx 8-9 minutes on each side (flipping them half-way through) until they just about started to brown. (Watch them closely at this point because how quickly they brown will depend on how thin/thick-ly you sliced them).
Removing them from the oven, I cooled them completely on the rack before serving them up with Rum-n-Raisin ice-cream and a drizzle of maple syrup!!
My cousins packed a whole bunch to take home! I stored the rest in an airtight cookie jar, although I have to say they didn’t last for more than a day…