Sunday, January 24, 2010

To Die for Hazelnut Biscotti

I've really been enjoying David Lebovitz's recipes lately. If you haven't checked out his blog, you should. Many of his recipes are there. This biscotti is adapted - just slightly - from his Chocolate Biscotti. I received a case of hazelnut flour at Christmastime (thanks, JDR) and have been working the flour - simply ground hazelnuts - into cakes and pastries.

What I really like about this recipe is the absence of butter. Not only are they a lean cookie, they have just the right crispness for a dunking biscotti. We've been enjoying them all week in our morning espresso.

Hazelnut Biscotti
Print recipe only here

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

Be sure to use the best quality cocoa powder you can get your hands on. You decide between natural or Dutch process - it doesn't matter. I use Valrhona's Dutched cocoa. I think it's got the richest, most chocolaty flavor and color. The flavor of the cookie depends entirely on the quality of the cocoa here. They will not be the same amazing cookie is you use an inferior cocoa.

No hazelnuts? No hazelnut flour? No problem! Substitute almonds. Use regular flour. Just don't skimp on the cocoa.

2 cups flour (or one cup flour and one cup hazelnut flour)
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted and coarsely-chopped
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350

Toast the hazelnuts for 5-7 minutes. cool. Rub together between your hands to remove skins.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a large mixing bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla. If doing it by hand, whisk vigorously for a minute. On the stand mixer, use the paddle and beat for about a minute. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Then add the nuts and chocolate chips and mix gently until incorporated. The dough will be a little wet - this is ok.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

Lightly flour a work surface and divide the dough in half. Roll the dough into two logs - to about the length of the baking sheet. The logs should be about 2-3 inches wide. Transfer the logs onto the baking sheet, spaced evenly apart.

Gently flatten the tops of the logs and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the dough feels firm. Cracks in the dough are normal after the first baking.

Allow the logs to cool completely. Use a serrated bread knife to cut the cookies into 1/3-inch thick slices. Lay the cookies cut side down on baking sheets and return to the oven for another 20-25 minutes, turning the baking sheet or flipping cookies over midway during baking.

Once cool, store the cookies in an airtight container for up to two weeks. Serve with espresso or with ice cream.


AC said...

I'll have to try these. Since they are to die for, visit biscotti heaven by dunking them in Bailey's.
I tweaked the original recipe you gave me years ago and always have some on hand.

Unknown said...

Can't wait to meet Silvia and have a morning espresso in (frickin freezing) Chicago in a couple of weeks!