I had always wanted to try baking these traditional western cuties but had never attempted until the Sweet Punch team announced the month's recipe as Biscotti!
Chocolate Almond Biscotti have two distinguishing features; its long, thin, curved shape and its crisp and crunchy texture. Since most biscotti contain nuts, with almonds being the most popular, these Chocolate Almond Biscotti are just about perfect as they contain both almonds and chunks of chocolate!
The Chocolate Almond Biscotti's crisp and crunchy texture comes from baking the cookie twice, which is different from most North American cookies. This second baking draws out the biscotti's moisture and how long they are baked determines how crisp and crunchy they will be. Biscotti are made by first forming the dough into a log and baking until firm. The log is cooled slightly and then cut into thin slices. The slices are baked until crisp which has the added bonus of giving them a long shelf life.
Chocolate Almond Biscotti Recipe:
Adapted from Joy of Baking
3/4 cup (110 grams) blanched whole almonds, toasted and chopped coarsely
2/3 cup (135 grams) granulated white sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups (225 grams) all-purpose flour
4 ounces (110 grams) semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped in 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) pieces (can use chocolate chips)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Toast almonds for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool and then chop coarsely. Set aside.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the sugar and eggs on high speed until thick, pale, and fluffy (about 5 minutes). (When you slowly raise the beaters the batter will fall back into the bowl in slow ribbons.) At this point beat in the vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the egg mixture and beat until combined. Fold in the chopped almonds and chocolate.
- Transfer the dough to your parchment lined baking sheet and form into a log, about 12 inches (30 cm) long and 3 1/2 inches (9 cm) wide. You may have to dampen your hands to form the log as the dough is quite sticky. Bake for 25 minutes, or until firm to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes.
- Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Transfer the log to a cutting board and cut into 3/4 inch (2 cm) slices, on the diagonal. Place the biscotti, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes, turn slices over, and bake for another 10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool. Store in an airtight container.
The recipe is fool absolutely proof! I halved the recipe and came up with 12 biscotti.
Enjoying the crispy biscotti, biting into soft chocolate chunks and roasted almonds with a steaming cup of coffee is simply irresistible, which I am doing right now, while typing this!
I will be baking them again and again!