Fruit and Nut Biscotti....Tyler Florence The other day, I picked up one of my cookbooks entitled, Tyler Florence's REAL KITCHEN cookbook. I spotted this recipe for pistachio biscotti. It was actually a recipe within a recipe. A recipe for Espresso Pots de Creme with these delicious looking biscotti...perfect for dipping. But it was the biscotti that made me look again. They looked so good, that I had to try them. I sort of took a chance. You see, I had almost given up on making biscotti. I had made too many that just weren't right. The biscotti were just... well,... hard. Too hard. I wanted biscotti that would be crisp, yet cookie-like. But these....well, they were really good! Probably the best biscotti I've ever made....so far. Maybe there are other biscotti recipes out there....but for now, I'll stick to this recipe.
It's really a pretty easy recipe to prepare. It comes together in no time and I really like that. The recipe can easily be tweaked to your preference...try adding different toasted nuts/dried fruits as well as different flavors. I think the biscotti benefits from some sort of flavoring....and especially chocolate:). It is an excellent base recipe for biscotti, so feel free to be creative...
I had a bit of oatmeal flour that I ground up( a few days before)...I wanted to use it up, so I substituted 1/2 cup of oatmeal flour for the regular flour. I didn't have enough pistachios, so I used a mixture of nuts. I spotted some dried blueberries and tossed in a handful. Also, I added some almond and orange flavoring for the vanilla. Next time, I want to add some orange peel as well. I had some good chocolate that I had been saving to make something really good. I guess I ended up using the chocolate to make the biscotti extra special...and I'm glad I did. We really enjoyed the biscotii with coffee. Such a nice treat to have on hand for overnight guests. They are wonderful as gifts ... wrap them up nicely in cellophane....and tie a pretty ribbon. You can also make a mini version of the biscotti (I think they would be really cute)....just make sure you adjust the baking time. Hope you enjoy...
You will need: adapted with a slight change from Tyler Florence's Real Kitchen, Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2003 You can also see a copy of the recipe on the Food Network Site
1 1/2 cups pistachios(I used a combination of pistachios, almonds, macadamias, and dried blueberry)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter(mine was softened)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract( I used almond and orange extract)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour( I used 3 cups AP flour and 1/2 cup oatmeal flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
~I am wanting to add some dried unsweetened coconut next time.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Lay the nuts on a cookie sheet in a single layer. Bake for 10 minutes or until the nuts are lightly toasted. Do watch them as nuts can easily burn. Remove from the oven and cool.
With an electric mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, sugar, and vanilla( or other flavoring). Mix until fully incorporated and is the mixture is creamed. Add the flour( and oat flour if using), baking powder, and salt. Mix the dough until smooth. Stir in the the pistachios( or other nuts) and dried fruit (if using) until thoroughly combined.
Place the dough on a lightly floured countertop. Divide in half. Roll each half into a log, about 12 inches long by 1-inch high. You can also make them smaller for a mini version. Place the logs on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for about 35 minutes or until the bottoms are lightly brown. Let the logs cool for 5 minutes. Place on a cutting board and using a serrated knife(it ensures that the dough doesn't crumble on you) , slice each log on a diagonal in 1-inch thick pieces. You should have about 12 pieces. Put the cookies back on the cookie sheet and bake 5 minutes. Turn the cookies over and bake the other side for another 5 minutes. If you want your biscotti to be a bit more crisp leave them in the oven for a few more minutes. They do crisp up a bit more as they cool off.
I like to sort of temper my chocolate by melting 3/4 of the amount of chocolate and reserving 1/4 of it. When the chocolate has melted I add the rest of the chocolate and stir to combine. Dip the bottom of the biscotti in melted chocolate and drizzle a bit more on the top. Let cool till chocolate has hardened.
Wrap in nice cellophane or store cookies in an airtight container. I like to freeze mine.