Thursday, November 20, 2008

Only the BEST Biscotti



I love Susan at Food Blogga. She is one of the first blogs I started reading about a year ago. I think she must be nuts because this is the second year she does this Christmas Cookie post.



Who has time for this? It's enough to have to bake, cook, plan menus and get ready for the holidays, but posting hundreds of other people's recipes, along with their photos? I hope she hired a high school kid to help her.

I am not much of a cookie baker. I just don't enjoy it. I am getting better at cake baking, but cookies just aren't my thing. Maybe it's a dough issue.

Well, with this amazing recipe, there is definitely a dough issue, or lack of one.

It is Susan's mother in law's biscotti recipe that she got from her Italian Bakery Sciallo Bros. in Providence, Rhode Island. You can buy these via mail order too. Her M.I.L. was nice enough to share the recipe last year with Susan's readers and I have made them at least 10 times. They are big pain in the ass to make.
There is basically NO DOUGH. There are only 2 eggs to moisten, so this biscotti is the really hard to work with. Jaw breakin' goodness.



I modified the recipe down to 2 cups of whole almonds, instead of 3 cups, and I do half the recipe dipped in semi sweet chocolate, the other half for the boring people!

They are definitely the best biscotti we have ever tasted, great for dipping in Vin Santo, or coffee, or not dipping at all. (I am a big dipper).

Here's a tip:
Keep your hands wet while working with this so called "dough". It is very crumbly, and I even splash a bit of water in the bowl to bind it together.

GOOD LUCK!

Susan's Mother in Law's Almond Biscotti:

1 cup sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar
2 cups King Arthur flour
pinch of cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp softened butter
2 cups of almonds (original recipe calls for 3 cups)

2 eggs beaten with 3 tbsp vanilla (I use a little less)

egg white for egg wash to brush on loaves

Oven at 350 degrees.
Mix all the ingredients together, except for the eggs (best if you use a standing mixer, I of course, do it free hand, I know I am a glutton for punishment).

Add the 2 eggs and vanilla while the machine is going around.

I use water to wet the mixture so it will form properly into loaves.
Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper. I make 3 logs and flatten them down with wet hands.

Brush with egg white.
Bake for about 40 minutes, but start checking on them at 30 minutes.



Remove them from the oven, and slide them onto a cutting board with a big heavy spatula. Let them rest no more than a few minutes, or they will be too hard to slice. (if you don't let them rest, then they will fall apart when you slice them! see what I mean about these being high maintenance baking!).

You don't have to twice bake these biscotti. They harden while they are cooling.
Slice on the diagonal into 1" slices. When cool, you can dip them in chocolate.



These truly are worth the effort. I love them and so does everyone who tries one.

Enjoy!

One more note: Susan does a lot of charity work and gets involved in worthy causes like Blogger Bakeoff whose slogan is "Bake Bread Give Dough".

Since the declining economy & loss of jobs, a lot of our local soup kitchens and food banks are seeing more families in need these coming months and are overwhelmed. They are short staffed and short on funds.
Since we (who are reading this) all love food, what a nice gesture this holiday season to donate some time or money to your local soup kitchens, churches or food banks.

If you need help finding out where your local food bank is, click on this link Feeding America and type in your zip code! Ti's the season.

19 comments:

Lisa said...

These look great and I would love to have some but I am just too lazy to make them. I love Susan's blog too. Nice way to end your post!

Ursula said...

I really love biscotti. Can't wait to try it. Ursula

Susan from Food Blogga said...

They really are the best biscotti ever. I can't believe you've made them 10 times! That's awesome! Thanks for mentioning the charity as well. :)

kat said...

Those do do sound a little fussy, its good that all the work is worth it

Content in a Cottage said...

I think this recipe should have a broken tooth disclaimer at the end. :-) Rosemary

Pam said...

Wow. This looks so tasty. I still haven't made biscotti - I really need to do it! I guess I found the perfect recipe to try.

EllenB said...

One look at the photo of the "dough" was enough for me to sigh and say "Pass!" (And I thought Tollhouse cookies were a pain in the ass!) I admire you for braving the challenge multiple times -- for that, you deserved the delicious treat! And I'm renewing my plea for your sweet potato gratin recipe. Come on! Thanksgiving is less than a week away! 'Tis the season!!!

Your #1 Fan . . .

Maria said...

I love making biscotti!! I love the crunch and it perfect for dipping!! Great job!!

Katie said...

That biscotti looks wonderfully delicious!!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Hee hee. Boring people!.

I love those big chunks of almond showing through.

Stacey Snacks said...

to EllenB.
I have sent you 2 emails with the recipe for the sweet potato dish!
Email me directly, and I will resend it to you!
I keep replying to your comment!
Thanks,
Stace

Karen said...

Biscotti is my favorite cookie - to bake & eat! These look great, but isn't it funny that the dough is so dry! I'll have to give them a try. Great addition to Susan's cookie recipe blog.

Daily Spud said...

I make biscotti with cranberries and pistachios and they are always a huge hit. If they were less fussy to make, I'm sure I'd make them more often, but as it is, there's always a little rush of excitement in my office when folks realise they're in for a homemade biscotti treat :)

Bluebird NY said...

You know I'm a big fan of this biscotti - the chocolate dipped are the best!

Thanks for the food pantry mention - it's so much important this year.

Elra said...

Sounds absolutely delicious!

Peter M said...

Pain in the "tucchus" but worth it, non?

It's the holiday season and this is the time to be baking things like biscotti...think of all the coffee you'll be serving up!

Patsyk said...

I think I'd rather try the one's with chocolate... who needs boring?

Helping at a local food pantry in any way is really a great thing to do - even with kids as young as 5 and 6. We did this recently, and will be going back to do it again soon.

nicisme said...

Yours look fabulous, I love the way you coated the cookie at the bottom!

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