Tuesday, July 3, 2012

TWD: Baking with Julia - Almond Biscotti

This week's Tuesdays with Dorie recipe is supposed to be Hazelnut Biscotti.  While I do like hazelnuts, I happened to have plenty of whole almonds on hand, so I decided to make Almond Biscotti instead!  If you would like the recipe, it is on page 315 of Baking with Julia, or you can check out the host bloggers:  Jodi of Homemade and Wholesome and Katrina of Baking and Boys.

One great thing about this recipe is that I had all of the ingredients right on hand!  Yippee!  That makes it so much easier!

The first thing you have to do is to peel the almonds.  The recipe included directions as to how to peel hazelnuts, and though I didn't actually follow them for the almonds, the techniques were very similar.  To peel an almond, first boil some water.  You'll want quite a bit more water than you have almonds, so for 2/3 of a cup of almonds, I used 2 cups of water.  I think the general ratio would be 4-5 cups of water per 1 cup of almonds.



Once the water is boiling, add the almonds and let them sit for a couple of minutes.  It does not take long!

Now pour the almonds into a colander and rinse with cold water until they are cool enough to handle.  Pinch the almond between your thumb and forefinger and the skin will slide off!  It is really that simple!

Now pat the almonds dry with a tea towel and continue with your recipe.  For the almond biscotti, I lightly patted the almonds, put them on a jelly roll pan, and toasted them for about 15 minutes at 350F.

 For the dough, whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.

Whisk the eggs, liqueur, vanilla, and sugar in another bowl.  The recipe calls for hazelnut liqueur, so I used amaretto.  I did use vanilla extract but I wish I had used almond.  It would have boosted the almond flavor even more!

Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and then make a 12-13 inch log with half of the dough.  Place the log on a parchment covered cookie sheet and make another with the other half of the dough.

Bake for 35 minutes at 300F.  This recipe actually says "exactly 35 minutes" which I find interesting as most recipes give you a slight range. 

Once cooled for about 10 minutes, cut each log on the diagonal into half-inch slices and place on a cooling rack.

You might think we are done, but no, there is more!  Place the cooling rack (yes, you read that right) back into the oven for another 10-15 minutes (see, a time range!!) until they are golden, dry and crisp.   Using the cooling rack allows the heat to circulate around the cookies, so you don't have to turn them over!

Theoretically, now they are done.  However I felt like they needed a little something.  Had I used the almond extract instead of vanilla, I might not have felt that way.  Regardless, I decided to melt some dark chocolate chips and drizzle that over the top of the biscotti.  Dark chocolate makes everything better!

Serve with hot coffee, tea, or your beverage of choice!

If you would like to see what other bakers have done with this recipe, check  out the Tuesdays with Dorie site and click on the post entitled, "LYL:  Hazelnut Biscotti".  This is where all of the bakers list links to their blog posts for this recipe! 

Enjoy!


33 comments:

  1. They are picture perfect! I love the chocolate drizzle.

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  2. I'm so glad I've made them and learned the technique how to blanch almond and hazelnuts: it's very handy for a lot of cookies recipe!
    Your step by step tutorial is lovely.

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    1. Thanks! Since I didn't do the hazelnuts I wonder if the blanching was as easy. I will certainly blanch my own almonds for future recipes! What a great trick!

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  3. Thats what i always do whenever I come across a cookie recipe that i felt needs something more.. drizzle some chocolate on them!! However, i added the chocolate in my dough this time round!!

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    1. Great thinking! Put the chocolate inside! Either way though, I can't say no to chocolate!

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  4. I drizzled mine, too :) Yours look perfect!

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    1. Thanks! The chocolate gave it that punch it needed!

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  5. Your's looks absolutely delicious with the chocolate drizzle!

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  6. Great tutorial and photos. Your biscotti look perfect. I drizzled mine with chocolate, too!

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    1. Great minds think alike! Looks like lots of us had the same idea!

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  7. Ooh I love the drizzling with chocolate! We loved these, and it was great that, for once, I didn't have to buy anything extra!

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    1. Isn't it great to find a recipe like this where you actually have all of the ingredients on hand? Love it!

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  8. Great idea with the chocolate! Lovely biscotti.

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  9. I love the chocolate you put on top! Delicious!!!

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  10. well done! i also did lemon but mine featured pistachios. and you are right, it is nice to open the cupboards and find all of the ingredients without having to go shopping!!!

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    1. Thanks! Pistachios would be delicious... and add a nice green wouldn't they? Yum.

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  11. They are definitely a plain cookie; good with tea or coffee. We liked them.

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    1. Yep, you need something to drink with these, but that is what biscotti is for, right?

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  12. I used hazelnuts, but love almonds. I'm glad to learn that I can blanch almonds with the same boiling method. I am enjoying dunking these in my tea. What a great snack!

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    1. I agree! I keep on munching away on them! Dangerous!

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  13. You can never go wrong with a drizzle of dark chocolate! Yours turned out beautifully. Thanks for the almond-skinning demo - I had no idea it was that easy.

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    1. I didn't either until I did a little research! Who knew? What a great trick!

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  14. I made almond also. I think I'll drizzle with chocolate next time too!

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  15. I love that this recipe was both easy & adaptable.
    The chocolate drizzle looks like the perfect touch.

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  16. I think your chocolate drizzle was a good move. And I wonder about that almond extract too. Good job!

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  17. thanks for visiting my blog, easier than pie! if you are interested in my book, it is easily found on amazon and you can find it by looking for "desserts from the famous loveless cafe". thanks again! alisa

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