Biscotti-a-thon

   

It started with a tweet.  Not the illicit near naked kind, but Maureen Evans’ tweeted biscotti recipe from the New York Times.  At 140 characters, this brief biscotti recipe seemed all too easy.  I had only made biscotti once before, a friend’s mother’s recipe, which was radically different, so I needed to study up a bit.  A consultation with Cook’s Illustrated, revealed a similar Lemon-Anise Biscotti recipe to the tweet, filled out with more details like mixing dry and wet ingredients separately, and decreasing the temperature on the second baking.  Fusing the two recipes, I boosted the flavor with CI’s addition of 1/2T lemon zest, 1/2T anise seed (instead of anise “flavr”) and 1/8t vanilla.  Incredibly easy, it satisfies my sweet tooth without being sinful and cloying.  I can see it being in my regular repertoire.

 

I was so filled with biscotti pride that I went on a biscotti binge for two work parties last week.  A batch of the easy lemon-anise biscotti for my non-nut co-workers, the crowd pleasing Mrs. D recipe, and as a challenge for me, Pistachio and Dried-Cherry Biscotti from the May 2011 Bon Appetit.  While cooking the BA recipe, I questioned the ratio of ingredients, the dough was incredibly dry, forming the log was like making a sand castle with the abundance of fruits and nuts falling off.  I prepared myself for disappointment.  Quite the opposite – they rocked!  Slightly chewy, and full of complex flavor from vanilla and almond extract, orange and lemon zest, and oats, I’m in love.  It’s more work than the tweet, but well worth it.

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