Every December I’m on the lookout for a holiday treat to give to friends and teachers. It has to be scalable, delicious AND look cute! It’s a tall order but I believe I have found the perfect special something for this year: biscotti.
I’m not some big biscotti person. I don’t ever buy it and rarely eat it. I mean, it’s good, but I just don’t think about it much. Last week I made biscotti with friends for the first time and have decided that homemade biscotti is a completely different thing. An amazing, crispy but fresh-tasting and wonderful thing. A thing that I can now add to my “can’t resist eating it” list. Because I really needed to add something else to that list.
Last week my amazing friend Natalee organized a Christmas craft night. She got four of our friends to each take a station and teach us: wreath making, holiday card display wreath, Christmas glitter ornaments and biscotti. I, of course, signed up to make biscotti. If there’s food involved, I am there! My other friend Erika directed our biscotti making efforts and she did a wonderful job. It was delicious, fun and informative (did you know biscotti bakes twice? I had no idea!). It was such a great night!
Since I loved all of the biscotti we had that night, I thought I would share the recipes with you this week! Perhaps biscotti will make it to your holiday cookie plate this year, too!
Today’s recipe is Chocolate Cherry Biscotti, which is adapted from Gourmet and Joy the Baker. It is AWESOME. That is all.
Chocolate Cherry Biscotti
Adapted from the Gourmet Cookbook and Joy the Baker
- 1 1/3 cup dried cherries
- 2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 large egg beaten with one teaspoon of water, for an egg wash
- milk and/or dark chocolate for melting and drizzling
Soak cherries in boiling water to cover in a small bowl until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain, then pat them dry with a paper towel.
Put a rack in the middle of oven and preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter and flour a large baking sheet, knocking off excess flour.
Whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Add eggs, vanilla and honey and mix with an electric mixer at medium speed until dough forms. Add cherries and chocolate chips and mix at low speed.
Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead several times. Halve dough. Using floured hands, form each half into a slightly flattened 13-by-2-inch log on baking sheet, spacing logs about 3 inches apart. Brush logs with egg wash.
Bake until golden 25 to 30 minutes. Cool logs on baking sheet on a rack for 10 minutes. (Leave oven on.)
Transfer logs to a cutting board. With a serrated knife, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch thick slices. (Click here to see a diagram for how to cut biscotti.) Arrange slices, cut side down in one layer on a baking sheet (it’s fine if slices touch each other). Bake, turning once, until golden and crisp, 20-25 minutes. Transfer biscotti to racks to cool.
Once cool, drizzle biscotti with milk chocolate, dark chocolate or both! Let sit until chocolate sets, about an hour.
Please note that if you click through to Joy’s recipe for honey pistachio biscotti, you need to use 2 1/2 cups of flour, not 1 1/2 cups. The original Gourmet recipe calls for 2 1/2 cups and Erika said the first time she made it with less flour and the dough didn’t work.