Want something good to dunk in that mid-morning cup of coffee? Hint: not a donut. Got a fast to break and need some tasty, yet simple noshes? Hint: Yom Kippur.
Try a biscotti. They’re one of the easiest cookies to make. The only downside is that they take a little bit of time to bake (that twice baked pesky thing) but hardly much time to mix up the dough, though you’ll need a strong arm.
Our biscotti dough has a particular texture that will indicate to you that the cookie will come out just right. No tricky things to do. All you have to do is pay attention to the ratio and how the dough feels.
The dough should feel slightly sticky once mixed. But it should come away from the sides of the bowl. It should be hard to stir and mixing in the remaining nuts, dried fruits or chocolate pieces will be an effort. To handle the dough and to smooth it out once formed, you’ll need clean, damp hands – not dripping wet, but damp.
After a gazillion batches there a few biscotti rules I like to bake by.
The ratio is always going to be about one extra-large egg (60 grams in the shell in the U.S. or a size A everywhere else) to about 130 grams Canteen blend or 1 cup of flour. Anything else added to the ingredients list is the stuff that makes each batch of biscotti unique.
Next, the first baking round should not be more than 25 minutes. Even if the loaf is not quite finished baking fully, the top will be firm. Any more than that and the cookie will end up hard to slice plus will be over done in the second round of low-heat baking. It’s not unusual for the top to crack slightly during the first baking.
Also, though many recipes say to brush with egg and sprinkle with sugar, that is superfluous and a waste of an egg and even the sugar. Biscotti are not supposed to be an over-the-top sweet thing. And the sugar makes a mess. Also, they store longer and better without the brushed egg/sugared top.
In the case of biscotti – less is plenty enough. But don’t forget the coffee.
|Honey Date Nut Biscotti|| |
- 150 grams granulated sugar (3/4 cup)
- 1 lemon zested
- 3 extra large eggs
- 1 tablespoon pure lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons good quality honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
- 325 grams Canteen flour blend (2 ½ cups) (see notes)
- 100 grams blanched almond flour (1 cup)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 140 grams toasted almonds, roughly chopped (1 cup)
- 250 grams dried dates, chopped (1 cup)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a small bowl blend together sugar and lemon zest until combined. Let the mixture sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes and longer is even better. Then add eggs, lemon juice, honey, vanilla and lemon extracts and blend until combined and well mixed. In a large bowl whisk together flours, baking soda, and salt until combined. Add liquid mixture to flour and stir until well combined and dough begins to leave the sides of the bowl. Stir in nuts and dates and blend thoroughly into the dough. The dough will be very sticky and it will take some effort to stir.
- Divide dough in half and roll each piece (with damp hands) into a 10-inch log. Place on baking sheet and flatten each log and smooth with wet fingers until each is about 2.5-inches wide and curved. Bake 20 minutes and remove from the oven. Cool thoroughly in the pan for at least an hour or even two. Slice on a board on the diagonal using a serrated knife. Place cookies back on the baking sheet and turn oven temperature to 275°F. and bake another 20-25 minutes. If the biscotti are not quite dried enough (the dates may keep it more moist than other types) turn oven temperature down again to 250°F. and bake 20-30 minutes more until they are toasted and dry. Cool completely. Makes about 30-32 biscotti.