So you made a batch of biscotti, attempted to bite into them and failed because they were rock hard.
Instead, you succeeded in breaking a tooth in the process and now you need to schedule an appointment with me. Or your local dentist. Yes – I am a dentist in real life. Of all the things in the world!
In case you’re shaking your head at the high sugar content of my blog posts in direct juxtaposition to my real life profession, it’s all good - looking at sugary food never hurt anyone. ;)
Anyway, I thought I’d share my favourite biscotti recipe that is crunchy but not tooth cracking-ly so. It is still nice and crispy but breaks up easily for effortless chewing. Also, it uses whole eggs, which means I am not left with a stray egg yolk wandering around aimlessly in the fridge for a week.
DISCLAIMER: If you do break a tooth eating these I am not liable – you probably needed a new filling anyway if that happened!
Double Chocolate Walnut Biscotti
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 cup self raising flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 160° Celcius (fan-forced).
- Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add egg and beat until well combined.
- Stir in all other ingredients thoroughly, forming a stiff dough.
- Form dough into a log roughly 12 inches long and 2 inches wide and place on baking tray covered with a sheet of baking paper.
- Bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove from oven and leave to cool for 15 minutes. Wrap log in cling wrap and leave in freezer for a few hours, preferably overnight.
- Take frozen log out of freezer and slice with a serrated knife diagonally into preferred thickness.
- Arrange biscotti slices flat on baking trays and bake at the same oven settings for about 10-15 minutes, or until biscotti is crisp.
Note: This recipe makes a biscotti dough that does crumble a little more easily than other recipes – which may seem like a bit of a pain. However, it is well worth the effort for the texture and flavour of the end result!
Tips for Perfect Biscotti
Cream Butter And Sugar Really Well
This is essential because it is a major contributor to the non rock-hard texture I was talking about. To be honest with you, it was a good couple of months into baking before I truly understood what creaming entailed. I will be dedicating an entire post to this at some stage in the future but for today’s exercise, make sure the mixture has:
- lightened in colour – it will no longer be yellowish, but rather a light shade of well… cream.
- increased in volume
If it hasn’t done the above two things – keep on creaming. It’s still not there yet!
Ensure Space Between Logs Is Adequate
So you doubled up the recipe and decided you want to have two logs on the same baking tray because life is too short to prepare a second one. If you have a large tray that’s all fine and dandy. Otherwise, unless you want a large puddle of dough in the middle of the pan, it will be wise to keep them on separate trays. This may have come from personal experience. This rule applies to all cookies that have the potential to spread.
Freeze Logs Of Dough Prior to Slicing
Does it make your job harder because the dough is frozen? Yes, and no. Yes because it is firmer and therefore requires more force, but no because it doesn’t smoosh on itself and the nuts don’t fall out of the dough! Plus, you’ll get beautiful clean slices at the end of the exercise. And stronger and more muscle tone in your arms. So I tell myself. Interested in clean slices in other baked goods? Read How To: Cut Brownies.
Also, if you’re lazy just make your biscotti nice and thick and call them rustic, rather than thin delicate slivers.
Set up for both of the photographs were on a neutral sheet of paper (as you can see, I have an entire roll of it!) on my trusty piano stool. Shot in natural daylight. The aperture was set at 4.5 for the thin biscotti and 2.8 for the thick ones and shot with a 60mm macro lens.
And that’s it! What is your preference – thick or thin biscotti? Let me know in the comments. I ate the entire batch in 4 days and have concluded I prefer the thick ones better but the thinner ones are prettier and more dainty.