Whenever a holiday rolls around I get excited to make a list of cookies that I want to make. The story was no different around Christmas, only instead of baking only for my family, I wanted to share cookies with our neighbors too. I probably spent a whole week browsing cookie recipes, looking for impressive, yet time do-able recipes (I had planned to make seven different things). One cookie that I have wanted to try was the biscotti and I thought that it would be the perfect holiday cookie.
Before I baked the dough, I shaped the dough into logs which gives the cookie its characteristic shape. After the logs baked and cooled, I controlled the length of the cookie by how deep I cut the logs on the diagonal. I cut the logs in a way to make smaller biscotti because they were cute and fit perfectly on a plate of shared cookies to the neighbors. You should have seen me cut the biscotti logs! To be honest, I don’t have a good bread knife, so I had to use two different knives to do the job! If I hadn’t done this, I found that the logs would crumble.
The recipe I used is from epicurious.com but I changed the recipe slightly by using anise extract instead of whole anise. I also used walnuts instead of pistachios. Here is the original: Holiday Biscotti
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon whole aniseed
1 cup dried sweetened cranberries
3/4 cup shelled natural walnuts (chopped)
6 ounces white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line 3 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Sift first 3 ingredients into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter and sugar in large bowl to blend well. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in vanilla and anise extract. Beat in flour mixture just until blended. Stir in cranberries and walnuts. The dough will be sticky and soft. Turn dough out on lightly floured surface. Gather dough together; divide in half. Roll each half into 15-inch-long log (about 1 1/4 inches wide). Carefully transfer logs to 1 prepared baking sheet, spacing 3 inches apart.
Bake logs until almost firm to touch but still pale, about 28 minutes. Cool logs on baking sheet 10 minutes. Maintain oven temperature.
Carefully transfer logs still on parchment to cutting board. Using serrated knife and gentle sawing motion, cut logs crosswise into generous 1/2-inch-thick slices. Place slices, 1 cut side down, on remaining 2 prepared sheets. Bake until firm and pale golden, about 9 minutes per side. Transfer cookies to racks and cool.
Line another baking sheet with waxed paper. Melt white chocolate chips in the microwave and dip the ends of the biscotti into the chocolate. Lay dipped biscotti on the baking sheet and let cool until the chocolate has set.