Saturday, December 21, 2013

Whole-Wheat Walnut and Raisin Biscotti


Biscotti Cooling


I was invited to my first ever cookie exchange. I have baked cookies before, but this week I did not really feel like making cookies, specifically getting the hand mixer out, creaming the butter, and forming the little balls that eventually become cookies. Any other week but this: I have been working a lot of long hours and we have another late night ahead of us.

What to do?

After going to Bux (a.k.a. Starbucks), I was inspired when I saw the biscotti. I have made biscotti before and I remember that it was fairly easy (no making little balls). I had to find a recipe that did not require creaming since the Chocolate-Walnut Biscotti that I made before did.

I found this recipe (again) from Martha Stewart on Walnut and Raisins Biscotti. This seems to be perfect. It used whole wheat flour (so it should be healthier), does not use butter, and used walnuts (which are in season). Also, no creaming needed.

For your convenience, I copied Martha’s recipe below with very minor revisions (I prefer using parchment paper). Let me know what you think.


Whole-Wheat Walnut and Raisin Biscotti
Slightly revised recipe from MarthaStewart.com

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour, spooned and leveled
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled, plus more for work surface
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnut
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Parchment paper or Non-stick spray, for baking sheet

Directions 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put parchment paper on a baking sheet or brush a baking sheet with oil; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt; stir in walnuts and raisins. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs and vanilla. Add to flour mixture; stir just until combined.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, with floured hands, pat dough into a loaf about 1 inch thick, 2 1/2 inches wide (and about 7 inches long); transfer to baking sheet. Bake until risen and firm, 20 to 25 minutes; cool completely on sheet. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.
  5. Place loaf on a cutting board, and using a serrated knife, cut diagonally into 1/4 inch-thick slices; place slices in a single layer on sheet. Bake, turning once, until dried and slightly golden, 25 to 30 minutes; cool completely.


Verdict

I love this recipe and may make it the template for my biscotti recipe. Based on my previous experience, I made two smaller loaves instead of one big one. My husband – the biscotti addict – loves this too. I had to make brownies to supplement my biscotti because we were both nibbling on it. I may make a version replacing the raisins with chocolate chips. That actually sounds great with coffee or hot chocolate.

Martha also added a note that this will last 30 days in an airtight container. Perfect if you’re baking it on the weekend and your exchange is later in the week. I doubt that it will last 30 days though – It is almost gone!!!

But at least… here’s my haul from the cookie exchange: a fair trade I think.

cookie exchange




Note: I am taking a mini-blogging break for the holidays to concentrate on eating, er… cooking.

Enjoy the holidays, and see you mid-January with new culinary adventures and mis-adventures.

Bonne année et bonne santé. Bon appétit.

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