Welcome to December's What's Baking!
The theme for this month is Biscotti and was selected by our host, hosted by Colleen of The Redhead Baker. Prior to this assignment I had never made biscotti before. I actually don't eat biscotti often, but thought it would be something fun to try for the holidays!
I decided to try a recipe from Serious Eats for Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti. The recipe was super easy, but when it came to manipulating my dough I had a little trouble getting the right shape. However, the biscotti tasted delicious even if it was not my prettiest creation! I am sure that with more practice I will get better at it. This batch I kept for myself, but am going to try another to get the shape looking a little better to give as gifts to friends and family for Christmas! I did change the amount of flour I used based on some of the recipe review complaining of dry sandy dough. I decreased the amount and did not have trouble with the consistency. One other adaptation I plan on making is to chop the hazelnuts. The original recipe calls for the whole and it s tasty, but I think having little tastes throughout the biscotti would be even better.
Last night Kellen finished up his swim class session and will be off for two weeks till the next session starts. He is doing so well in the water and it makes me so proud of him! Tonight, my Dad and I are shopping for our large family Christmas this weekend. Also on my to do list is a batch of Oreo truffles, a batch of cookies and homemade lip balm.....I think I might have too much on my plate tonight...good thing babies and toddlers condition you not to need as much sleep....lucky me.
Hope everyone's week is going great! I have a few delicious cookie recipe coming up in the next few days for those of you who are still looking for ways to fill Santa's plate!
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, slightly softened
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup plus 2 Tbl all-purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp instant coffee powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cups hazelnuts, whole, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 large egg for egg wash
Position one rack in the middle of the oven, and preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper.
In a bowl with an electric mixer, cream the butter with the sugar for until a sandy mixture forms. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until fluffy and lighter in color.
In a medium mixing bowl, add the flour, cocoa powder, coffee powder, baking soda, and cinnamon and whisk together. Add to the butter-and-egg mixture in 2 additions, and mix only until combined.
Fold the hazelnuts and chocolate chips into the dough, and mix until evenly distributed. If it is too sticky to handle, chill briefly.
Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. On a lightly floured surface, roll each piece of dough into a log about 2 inches wide by 14 inches long by 1 1/2 inches high. Place the logs on the prepared sheet pan with several inches between them.
In a small bowl, mix 1 egg with 1 teaspoon of water to make an egg wash. Brush each log with egg wash, coating them evenly on the top and sides.
Bake for 27 minutes, rotating the cookie sheet from front to back halfway through baking, until very lightly browned and somewhat firm. Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees.
Cool the logs for 20 minutes, then place them on a cutting board. With a serrated knife, slice each log on a slight angle into 3/4-inch-thick pieces, keeping them in a row. Slide the row of biscotti together, lift and place back on the cookie sheet, then separate the slices, leave 1/2 inch of space between each one.
Bake again for 9 to 12 minutes, rotating once during baking, until the biscotti feel slightly firm.