I have one of my favourite recipes for you today – something perfect for you to devour now that the bikini body is kind of out the window! I have never really been a biscuit person – I would always reach for sweets and chocolate when having a sweet craving, however this biscotti seems to have hugely taken over. I first tried biscotti when I was in Italy years and years ago, as it was served along side my very Italian and delicious espresso. I remember instantly thinking to myself how much I loved the biscotti, however it seemed like something that would always seem much to difficult to make. Last year I made my first ever batch, when I found a recipe in a new baking recipe book. I read through the ingredients and the method and decided to myself that I was hugely over thinking it and it actually looked pretty easy.
The first time I made it, I found it quite a challenge, however looking back I can definitely see how that was all psychological. I can make it so quickly now, and don’t dread having to do so. Biscotti can sometimes be quite messy to make, as there a few different stages and obviously you are dealing with quite a wet dough. Once I got over this, the whole process became like second nature to me, and I do think baking is so much easier when you have a vague idea in your head of what you are doing. If you are looking to try something a little different to add to your baking repertoire, or even in need of a delicious snack for yourself, I would definitely give these a go.
Sea Salt & Dark Chocolate
I adore the combination of dark chocolate and sea salt, with the salty taste complimenting the bitter chocolate perfectly, which is obviously not too overpowering because of the sugar in the biscuits. If you would like to try out a different combination, simply remove the dark chocolate and sea salt from the recipe and add your own ingredients.
Makes – 20 Biscotti Biscuits
Skill – Medium
Preparation Time – 20 & 10 minutes
Cooking Time – 40 Minutes
200g Plain Flour // 1tsp Baking Powder // 200g Caster Sugar // 200g Dark Chocolate Chips // 2tsp Sea Salt Flakes // 3 Eggs // 1tsp Vanilla Extract // 150g Dark Chocolate // Decoration of Choice (suggested: gold dust, hazelnuts, sea salt, pistachios)
Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees, 160 degrees’ fan. Grease and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper, ready to bake the biscotti on. I always find it easier using butter to grease underneath the paper so that it sticks, as well as greasing the paper itself with a little more butter just on the bottom. Whenever I bake, something always gets stuck to the tray!
In a large mixing bowl, sieve through the plain flour, sugar and baking powder. Then add the dark chocolate chips and sea salt. Mix all these dry ingredients together thoroughly, ready to add the next ingredients.
This is the part where you need some serious arm strength, not to mention a lot of patience. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing everything together thoroughly between each. With the first two it will seem like the mixture is never going to bind, but believe me it will. Don’t be tempted to add water or any other wet ingredients as the eggs will be enough. By the time you get to the third egg, I usually start using my hands at this point as I feel the heat from my hands really brings it all together. Add the vanilla extract, and make sure you have now got a sticky dough like mixture.
On a board, split the mixture in two. Put on the baking tray and spread them out in a slight cylinder shape. You don’t want them to be too close together as when they cook they will spread out and could land up sticking together. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until the top looks golden.
Remove from the oven, but don’t turn it off. Leave the biscotti to cool for about 5 minutes. Now it is time to cut them. Cut each biscotti into ten slices, all pretty identical. Place all of them back on the baking tray, side way up so they can crisp up a little. Bake for 5 minutes, remove and turn over. Bake for another 5 minutes. Transfer to a cooling wire rack and leave until completely cool.
In a heat proof bowl, melt the dark chocolate over some simmering water. The dark chocolate should be extremely runny and glossy. Cover each biscotti just below half way up with dark chocolate, so that the area is completely covered. I put the biscotti in the chocolate, but use a spoon to get the chocolate over them. As you do each one, decorate just on the top with your chosen decoration. I love these little gold bites which I can buy in Waitrose, but there will be lots of alternatives in every supermarket.
Now sit back, boil the kettle and enjoy your biscotti with a warming cup of tea!
Thanks for reading!
This recipe is my own, based on biscotti and biscuit techniques I have learnt over the years.