Monday, 3 January 2011

Chocolate Hazelnut & Orange Biscotti

As soon as I saw the post about biscotti over at Fig and Lime Coridal, it was only a matter of time until I had a go at making some myself. I had made some really good chocolate biscotti a few years ago, but having lost the recipe, it went off my radar.  However, once reminded, it was a dead cert. These were on my list for Christmas gifts. I used Celia's recipe as my base line, but adapted it to include melted chocolate. I also found I needed to add some water as the dough was just too dry to come together without it - this may be because I used wholemeal flour. Anyway, this is what I did:
  • Roasted 140g hazelnuts for 10 minutes in a hot oven to loosen skins (and make house smell good).
  • Allowed to cool, then rolled the nuts between my hands to take off the skins.
  • Chopped roughly.
  • Melted 72% dark chocolate (72%)
  • Sifted 300g flour 150g wholemeal spelt and 150g white spelt) into a bowl with 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp bicarb of soda, 1/4 tsp salt (Himalayan pink) and 75g cocoa (G&B).
  • Mixed in 200g vanilla granulated sugar (or use 1 tsp vanilla extract) and 2 tsp orange zest.
  • Made a well in the centre and broke in 3 large eggs.
  • Mixed in the eggs working in the dry ingredients from the side.
  • Added the melted chocolate and mixed a bit more.
  • Added the nuts.
  • As the mixture was very dry, added a couple of tablespoons of water to bring dough together with my hands.
  • Divided dough into two and rolled into sausage shapes about 3 inches wide.
  • Placed these on a lined baking tray and baked at 180C for 25 minutes.
  • Removed from oven and left to cool for 15 minutes.
  • Cut the rolls into diagonal 1 cm thick slices to ensure a longish thinish shape.
  • Baked the slices for a further 20 mins at 160C, turning them over half way through.
  • Placed on a wire rack and left to cool.
  • Made 33 pieces
Hoorah, these were a complete success. They looked as good as I could have hoped for with a nice dark chocolatey colour contrasting well with the white hazelnuts that studded them. They smelt wonderful and the aroma scented the house for a long time afterwards. I had a hard time stopping myself from opening the tin every half hour just to inhale their fragrance. They had the classic biscotti texture, which can be a bit of a shock if you are expecting a standard cookie type biscuit; these Italian double baked biscuits are hard and are meant for dunking. This batch was not just visually appealing, there was a depth to the flavour as a result of rich chocolate, nuttiness from the hazelnuts and just a hint of orange - all very satisfying. No surprise then, that I had to restrain myself (and CT) from having more than a nibble as these were destined for packaging and passing on.

26 comments:

  1. I have never made biscotti. They look lovely for a Christmas gift.

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  2. I made biscotti once, but as I am averse to dunking (crumbs in the bottom of the mug eeeuch!) I never did again, these look great and your description of inhaling the lovely smell almost tempts me to have a go again!

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  3. Melted chocolate, great idea! Thanks for the mention, Choc! :)

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  4. A very happy new year to u n ur family - Love the simple recipe n the wonderful click !!

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  5. Maggie - these are well worth making. As well as tasting good, they keep a long time too.

    Janice - Have to say, I don't actually dunk them, but they don't leave lots of crumbs.

    Torview & Tamanna - thank you

    Celia - thanks for reminding me about biscotti and for the recipe. It's a good one.

    Smita - thank you for your good wishes

    Priya - they were

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  6. Ooh lovely, I have been meaning to make biscotti for ages.

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  7. They look great. Love added melted chocolate too ;0)

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  8. lovely presents - have never been a huge biscotti fan - perhaps because I don't drink many hot drinks - but the lovely flavours are very tempting

    I was just about to comment to let you know I had given you an award but you are on the ball so it seems you have seen it already - enjoy

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  9. Yummie, yummie, yummie for my tummy!

    These home made biscotti rock!!


    Great as a special foods gift indeed!

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  10. I began to salivate as soon as I read the title of your post. Your recipe is pure paradise. I hope you've had a wonderful holiday and that the new year brings you all measure of good things. Blessings...Mary

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  11. lovely biscotti... have never made it before so I will add them to my must make list for Feb... I have to wait for Feb else I explode!

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  12. I made chocolate and hazelnut biscotti for Christmas (still have a couple of pieces hidden away!!!!)

    Yours looks delicious.

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  13. P.S. these blondies might be a good option for your pumpkin

    http://brownievillegirl.blogspot.com/2010/07/brownies-11.html

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  14. Kath - I found this recipe easier than the last one I used.

    Chele - well it was Christmas

    Johanna - I believe biscotti are also meant to be dipped in sweet wine! But to be honest, they are really nice just eaten on their own. Thanks for the award.

    Sushma - thank you

    Sophie - yummy for one's tummy but also tubby on the tummy ;-) Glad you liked them.

    Mary - thank you. I did indeed have a lovely holiday. Think I shall be making these again as they were very good.

    Dom - intentions are always such wonderful things!

    BVG - I couldn't see anything about them on your website, or are you saving up the post? Thanks for the help with the surplus squash.

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  15. You can't go wrong with biscotti. Easy to make and they last a long time (as long as I don't eat them all.)
    Yours look great Choclette!

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  16. Wow, you were incredibly productive. I am really impressed - I managed a few biscotti in the end but they were new year presents I was so behind

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  17. Oh how I love biscotti! This recipe with the combination of Chocolate and Hazelnuts with the Orange zest sounds like the perfect snack to take to work to have along with my afternoon coffee! :D
    Thanks for sharing!
    Nick

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  18. I had biscotti on my list for Christmas blogging but never fit it in. I guess it is still great for cold winter days! This one looks really good. I love homemade biscotti and it is really easy (easier than I could have believed). I like it wrapped up in the cute cellophane bags.

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  19. Very Happy and glorious new year Choclette, biscotti is something haven't tried my hands would love to got my inspiration...looks awesome

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  20. I made biscotti for the first time before Christmas at a cookery class, they're so rewarding aren't they? I don't know why there's just something about them.

    Great flavour combo, chocolate and orange is one of my favourites.

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  21. OO, delicious! thank you very much indeed for sharing the recipe xxx

    i am not sure you will recognise me as millie meadowsweet, but you may just possibly remember me from my previous incarnation as skipping in the meadow. yes, i'm back! this time for for keeps (i hope) and its so lovely to see you this new year.

    wishing you a very happy, sparkly, healthy 2011
    lots of love and hugs xxx

    millie (sumea)

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  22. CityHippy - will have to make another batch of these so we can properly try them out.

    Oxslip - I thoght they worked well as presents. What type did you make?

    Nick - great idea as something to take to work. I shall definitely have to make another batch.

    Jac - it did seem a lot easier this time around. Last time I made it, I swore I'd never do it again!

    Ananda - thanks. They are definitely worth trying - at least once :)

    Sarah - thanks. They are rewarding - apart from the chocolates I made, these were the Christmas ones I was most pleased with.

    Millie - nice to see you back, of course I remember you. Thanks for your good wishes and good luck in your new incarnation.

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