I always need a little something with my coffee in the evening, and given I am not always a super sweet tooth, biscotti is the perfect bite size treat. I would never have thought to try and make my own biscotti, having always just bought the boxes you can buy in the supermarket, until my husband casually whipped up a batch one afternoon (!?!) and they were AMAZING!! Yes, my husband (a builder) is exceptionally talented at making biscotti. And scones for that matter. But he totally stole my recipe for those and it is a sore point every time I bite into one of his deliciously light and fluffy creations. 😄 In all honesty, I have been with Rob since I was 18 years old and he still never ceases to surprise me with his many hidden talents. He is the best.
ANYWAY! After Rob assured me that there really is no trick to biscotti, I set about making my own, with a view to giving them a festive look and flavour so we could not only enjoy them at home, but package them up and give as delicious edible Christmas gifts.
When it comes to Christmas baking, you really can’t go past cranberries and pistachios. The deep red of the cranberries and the bright green of the pistachios – they really are a festive marriage made in heaven. To the traditional cranberry and pistachio I add dark chocolate chips because, why wouldn’t you add chocolate if you could?! as well as some grated orange zest and a pinch of mixed spice to give it that extra Christmassy zing.
These are absolutely delicious and make a gorgeous Christmas gift as well as a tasty little coffee accompaniment for home.
1 2/3 cup plain flour, sifted
1 cup raw sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup pistachio nuts
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
zest of half an orange finely grated with a hand zester
pinch of mixed spice
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 75 minutes (including 20 minutes to cool between bakes)
Servings: approximately 3o pieces of biscotti
Preheat oven to 180C (160C fan forced)
Line 2 x baking trays with baking paper.
Place sugar and eggs into a bowl and whisk to combine. (I did all the preparation in my thermomix but you could definitely do it with a bowl and a whisk and wooden spoon)
Add sifted flour, baking powder, pistachios, dried cranberries, dark chocolate, orange zest and mixed spice into the bowl. Stir gently to combine.
Once all the ingredients are combined, tip the mixture onto a floured surface and use your hands to knead until smooth.
Divide the dough into two and then form into two even size logs. Place one log on each lined tray.
Bake in oven for 30-35 minutes, until golden brown. Once cooked, allow to cool for 20 minutes. Turn the oven down to 140C (120C fan forced).
Once cooled, use a serrated knife to cut the biscotti into slices. Hold the edges as you are cutting to stop crumbling. Lay the slices of biscotti on the baking trays and bake in the cooler oven for a further 2o minutes, turning over once half way.
After the final 20 minutes of baking, remove from the oven and transfer to a wiring rack to cool. And they are done!
I kept half of this batch for us, and packaged the other half in a small glass jar I bought from IKEA. Gorgeous and delicious!!