Friday, November 16, 2007


--- This recipe is from Gourmet Magazine, July 1999. I added the white chocolate dip and reduced the ginger by 1/2 teaspoon. Otherwise, I followed the recipe exactly. It's an easy recipe and quite delicious. The biscotti are low fat, crunchy and tasty. (These are not a tender cookie because there is no fat in the recipe to make them tender. They are a typical crunchy biscotti.) The powdered ginger and the crystallized ginger together make a very flavorful cookie. Here is the crystallized ginger that I used. I bought it at our local Harris Teeter for $2.99, quite a bargain! I only used half the container for this recipe.

A word about the white chocolate (if you decide to use the dip): Buy a good-quality white chocolate, one that lists cocoa butter as a main ingredient.  If you've never liked white chocolate, it could be that you've never tasted white chocolate made with cocoa butter.

Ginger Almond Biscotti
INGREDIENTS: 3/4 cup whole almonds with skins
1/2 cup crystallized ginger
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon powdered ginger
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
6 oz. white chocolate chips
2 tsp. fat free half and half, or heavy cream, or milk

DIRECTIONS: Have all ingredients at room temperature before starting. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In a shallow baking pan, toast almonds in middle of oven about 10 minutes, or till lightly toasted. (I used the same pan that I baked the biscotti in for this.) Cool nuts and very coarsely chop. Finely chop the crystallized ginger.

My Henckel Santoku knife made short work of these chores. When you chop the nuts, do it carefully. If the knife hits the nut just so, it will fly across the room.

Spray a 1-1/2 quart Pyrex loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray. Line the pan with wax paper that hangs over the sides.

Into a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, ground ginger, salt and baking soda. In the workbowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment beat together the whole egg, egg white and vanilla. Stir in the flour mixture just till combined. Stir in almonds and crystallized ginger. This mixture will be very very sticky. You don't want to try and knead it or do anything with it except put it into the pan. Just drop it in with your spatula in globs and roughly smooth it out but don't worry about it being perfect, because it will spread when it bakes. Bake in the middle of the oven until pale golden, about 45 minutes. This is what it will look like when it comes out of the oven:
Turn it upside down and pull off the wax paper. Turn it right side up and let it cool on the rack for at least an hour, or till thoroughly cooled.
Remove the loaf to a cutting board and, using a sharp knife (I used by Henckel bread knife), cut slices crosswise about 1/4" thick.

The biscotti is still just a bit moist at this point and needs to be dried out. It tastes quite good as is, but you know biscotti is supposed to be dry. If you like it like this, then don't go any further with it, but I went the second step. Put the cut biscotti on a baking sheet and bake in middle of oven at 325 degrees F. about 10 minutes, then turn biscotti over and bake 10 minutes more or until golden brown and crisp. Cool biscotti on rack. You do not need to dip the biscotti, but the white chocolate is very good with them.

For the white chocolate dip, melt 6 oz. white chocolate chips in pyrex bowl over simmering water till melted and thin enough to dip. I added 2 tsp. fat free half and half and 1 tsp. butter. If the white chocolate looks grainy and thick, just add some more half and half, cream or milk and stir till smooth. Dip the biscotti, one at a time, in the melted chocolate mixture, then lay them on a cookie sheet that has been lined with wax paper. When all have been dipped, place the sheet in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to quickly harden the chocolate, then remove and store as desired. I freeze all my cookies because they keep better, but you can also store biscotti in an airtight container at cool room temperature for about 2 weeks.

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