When I opted in to yet another cookie exchange (on the same weekend as the other one), I knew I wanted to make another biscotti, but one that was classic Christmas. After looking through oodles of recipes, I decided on this one from Allrecipes, but with a few changes. One of the things I noticed right away about this recipe was the addition of butter, an ingredient not found in most biscotti recipes.
With the addition of butter, I was wondering how the texture would be. When they were just fresh out of the oven and cooling, they were really crispy like a classic biscotti. When they were completely cool though, the butter set in and moistened them somewhat… it was like a biscotti and a Christmas shortbread hybrid. Interesting. These are absolutely delicious, with hints of various holiday flavours… but not 100% biscotti, even though they look like it. This is why I dubbed them ‘Bis-shorti’ (pronounced biz-shawty, 50 cent style).
My Christmas Bis-shorti
Inspired by Allrecipes
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp orange (I used clementine) zest
- 2 tbsp Cointreau
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped fine
- 1/4 cup cocoa nibs, chopped rough
- 1/2 cup toasted almonds, chopped
Semi-sweet chocolate chips, for drizzling, approximately 1/2 a cup.
In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or old school with a big bowl and a wooden spoon), cream butter until light and fluffy. Add in sugar and continue to beat on medium until well creamed. Add in eggs one at a time, beating in between eggs. Add in Cointreau and vanilla. In another bowl, stir (no need to sift) together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and cloves. Add in all in once and continue beating on medium-low until it comes together into a soft dough. Add in the cranberries, nibs and almonds and mix in on lowest speed.
Form dough (it is soft, so do your best) into two logs about 10 inches long and about 2 inches wide (and about 3 inches apart, but these do not really spread much at all). Flatten the tops somewhat and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 300 degrees. Move the logs to a cutting board and allow to cool for 10 -15 minutes. Slice into 1/2 inch slices and bake, cut side down, for 15 minutes, flip and cook on other side for an additional 15 minutes.
Allow to cool and then melt semi-sweet chocolate on top of a double boiler or carefully in the microwave (I don’t have much luck that way). Spoon the melted chocolate into a small freezer bag and snip a very small bit off of one bottom corner. Drizzle chocolate over cooled biscotti. These will keep in an air-tight tin for a couple of weeks (not with us around), and do freeze very well (I just ate the 2 that I test-froze, yum!).