Monday, November 9, 2009

Chocolate Pecan Biscotti

Biscotti have always been a little too hostile for me.  I  like my cookies to be soft and melty; ladylike, if you will.  With biscotti, I know I’m in for a fight.  When you have to use the meat gnawing molars to subdue a cookie there’s something wrong…so I dismissed biscotti as too forceful; the bully of the cookie family.

Halloween 171

Years later I was standing outside the main entrance to the Nordstrom Flagship store in downtown Seattle.  Through the open store doors the scent of leather and perfume and elegance beckoned and I knew that I’d need some shoring up before I was ready for total Nordstrom immersion.

This is best done with chocolate and caffeine so I ducked into the Nordstrom coffee bar.  At first I dismissed the chocolate dipped biscotti, but there was something about that glossy chocolate exterior that beguiled me.  Also, it was the only thing that had any chocolate on it.

Either biscotti had been tamed in the intervening years or I’d judged too harshly in my tempestuous youth because this cookie yielded without so much as a bone jarring.   The was no wrestling for dominance.  This cookie knew its place and yielded with an elegant and satisfying crunch then infused my mouth with lush chocolate flavor.  It might have been a day or a week but it wasn’t long before I started testing biscotti recipes and came up with with one:

Chocolate Biscotti

To make an elegant statement, melt semisweet chocolate chips and drizzle across, do the same with melted white chocolate.

2 cups flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

¾ cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped*

¾ cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Butter and flour a baking sheet. In bowl whisk together flour, cocoa baking soda and salt. In another bowl beat together butter and sugar until fluffy, add eggs.

Stir in flour mixture to form stiff dough. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts.

With floured hands form two logs 12” long and 2” wide. Bake 35 minutes, cool five minutes then cut diagonally. Place on baking sheet and bake until crisp about ten minutes.


I like to freeze these and pull them out when I want a quick tea treat.  They make a wonderful hostess gift; I slip them into an oblong bag and tie with a pretty ribbon or pack into a small bakery box, wrap with food grade tissue then tie with a ribbon.


El said...

Honestly, this biscotti looks down right delicious. I had no idea they were so simple to make. Now where did I put the coffee?

sandraj said...

You did it again something wonderful