To make and give: Blissful biscotti
I'm writing away as the radio tells me how much money I've lost today, and I'm thinking also of the holiday season, of all the people I want to thank and delight. A gift made with your own hands transcends the commercial. Seems like a good time to offer my recipe for biscotti, which I make and give to office colleagues, Mirielle, who owns my wonderful vintage store, the neighbours. Past recipients now hint that they hope I won't forget theirs.
The easy recipe makes lots (though I make at least three batches) and the cookies keep very well. You could add a package of great coffee or tea for a special gift.
Almond Hazelnut Biscotti
1 ½ c toasted whole blanched almonds
2 cups granulated sugar
½ cup butter, melted
Zest from 1 ½ lemons
4 cups all purpose flour
½ cup toasted ground hazelnuts
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
In a food processor with metal blade, coarsely chop ½ cup almonds, set aside.
In large bowl, whip eggs till frothy. Stir in sugar, melted butter and zest.
In a separate bowl, stir together flour, hazelnuts, whole almonds, chopped almonds, baking powder and cinnamon, stir into egg mixture until dough is formed.
Line two cookie sheets with parchment. With hands, form dough into 4 logs, 12 inches long by 2 1/2 inches wide. (Two logs per cookie sheet). Smooth top and sides.
Bake in 350 oven for 25 minutes or until firm.
Cool slightly. While still warm, slide logs back onto work surface, cut into 1/2 inch slices. Return to cookie sheets, cut side down, bake for another 20 min. or until crisp and browned.
Makes at least 5 dozen cookies. Store in airtight tin. Best aged 2 weeks.
When I give them, I put a dozen or so in a paper bag and tie with ribbon.