Monday, September 20, 2010

Blueberry Almond Biscotti

Biscotti are great, you can make a lot of them with fairly minimal effort, they make nice homemade gifts, and they last a long time.

The name means "twice baked" and refers to the fact that they are, in fact, baked twice: once as a "loaf" and then the loaf is cut and the pieces are baked in their more recognizable form.

It's nice they're not as delicate as other cookies, and that they're not as "high maintenance" either.

You can pack them on the tray for the second baking and don't have to worry about that 2 inches worth of space you would need to leave for other more demanding cookies so they don't creep up an touch the other cookies on the tray (eek!).
Scandalous business.

Then again, cookies touching on a pan isn't as traumatic as peas and applesauce touching on a 5-year-old's dinner plate. So... maybe it's not so bad.

They're really great with a cup of coffee or tea, and nice for dunking (if you so choose) since they're a little more dry and crunchy than conventional cookies.

I had some blueberry-almond-white chocolate cookies recently. They were pretty good, and I wanted to try to re-create something like it. This is my interpretation.

I really did want to try to dip some in white chocolate, but when I went shopping for supplies, they didn't have any white chocolate at the store. Too bad. So, I bought a HUGE bar of dark chocolate instead (no loss).

To use the chocolate, chop as much as you will be using. Alternatively, I suppose you could just use chocolate chips.

Place a glass bowl over a simmering pot of water so that it rests in the pot, but the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water. Stir the chocolate occasionally until it is fully melted.

Remove the bowl from over the pot of water, and dip (or drizzle) the cookies to your heart's content.

When they were all dipped and lined up they reminded me of rows of eclairs.

Blueberry Almond Biscotti
makes approximately 50 cookies

1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/3 c sugar
4 eggs
1 1/2 t vanilla
4 c flour
1/2 t salt
3 t baking powder
1 c dried blueberries
1 c almonds, lightly toasted in a pan and chopped
melted chocolate (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, with one oven rack in the lower third of the oven and one in the upper third of the oven.
Cream butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating a little between each addition. Add vanilla with the final egg. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Stir the flour mixture into the butter and sugar in several additions (to make sure it is incorporated well). Do not overbeat. Add the almonds and blueberries and stir only until they are scattered throughout the dough.
Remove the dough from the bowl to a lightly floured surface. Knead a few times and divide into four equal pieces. Roll each piece into a "log" shape about 12 inches long. Place 2 logs of dough longways onto a cookie sheet a few inches apart. Flatten each log slightly so that it is approximately 3 inches wide.
Bake the loaves (one on the upper rack, and one on the lower rack) 15 minutes. Rotate the pans back to front and top to bottom and bake about 15 to 20 minutes longer. The loaves should be dry/set and a pale golden color. Remove the loaves from the sheets and let them cool slightly until they are cool enough to handle.
Place one of the oven racks in the center of the oven.
Cut each log on the diagonal into slices 1/2 to 3/4 inch wide.
Place the cookies on one of the cookie sheets (I found I was able to get 2 "loaves" worth of cookies onto one sheet. Bake the cookies 5-7 minutes, turn them over, and bake 5-7 minutes longer. Repeat with remaining cookies.
Remove the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely. At this point you can dip them in chocolate or and store in an airtight container.


  1. Poetry! Great, I hope we will be able to taste this soon.

  2. Dear Natalie,
    I thought these were very very good and such a treat with coffee and tea.
    While the chocolate was so delicious I felt it masked the more delicate blueberry which was so chewy and I like your idea of trying the white chocolate with it. Or if you really want choco
    do the almonds and save the precious blueberries for the next time.
    Your fan,
    Ps. I wonder if you will post this?

  3. Great post Natalie! I LOL'd several times and this recipe will definitely be made in my house in the very near future. :)

  4. YUM-O, I love non high maintenance cooking. Thanks!

  5. Steve LOVED them!!! they were a huge hit at our house... he decreed that they were all his... I often break these rules--- this was a rule-breaking day.