Saturday, 18 December 2010

Almond and Lemon Biscotti

Biscotti are grown-up cookies. Hard and unyielding until dipped in strong coffee or tea, they then give way to moist and crumbly deliciousness.
Giada's biscotti recipe comes with a white chocolate dip, but I was entranced by the amaretto icing on Kim's cookies and went with that instead. I love the way it dissolves in my coffee to sweet amaretto delight.
You may prefer the white chocolate. Either way, I have included both finishes to these delectable cookies.The choice is yours!

Almond and Lemon Biscotti Dipped in White Chocolate
for IHCC What's on your Cookie Plate?
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis, 2008

    20 biscotti


    * 2 cups all-purpose flour
    * 3/4 cup cornmeal
    * 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    * 1 teaspoon salt
    * 1 cup sugar
    * 3 large eggs
    * 3 tablespoons grated lemon zest (from about 3 to 4 lemons)
    * 3/4 cup coarsely chopped whole almonds
    * 18 ounces white chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.

In another large bowl, beat the sugar and eggs with an electric mixture until pale yellow, about 3 minutes. Mix in the lemon zest and then the flour, and beat until just blended. (The dough will be sticky). Stir in the almonds. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes.

Divide the dough evenly into 2 equal mounds and place on the prepared baking sheet. With moist hands, space the dough evenly apart and form into 2 (9 by-3-inch) logs. Bake for 35 minutes until lightly browned. Cool for 5 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise into 3/4-inch-thick diagonal slices. Arrange the biscotti cut side down on the same baking sheet. Bake until the cookies are pale golden, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely.

Place the chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the pan does not touch the water. Stir until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Dip the end of each biscotti in the chocolate. Transfer the dipped biscotti to a wire rack, set over a baking sheet, until the chocolate has hardened. Store in an airtight container.

What I used:
1-3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
5-7 tablespoons Amaretto or other almond flavored liqueur

To ice the cookies, pour the confectioners' sugar in a medium mixing bowl.  Gradually whisk in the Amaretto until the mixture is just thin enough to drizzle.

Place the wire rack with the cookies on it over a baking sheet.  Using a spoon or fork, drizzle the cookies with the icing, allowing any excess icing to drip onto the baking sheet.  Allow the icing to set before serving at least 30 minutes.