Monday, December 20, 2010

Mocha Spice Biscotti

In their Holiday Cookie a Day slideshow, Bon Appetit featured a recipe for coffee-spice shortbread with crystallized ginger. While that combination of flavors intrigued me, I thought I might prefer to make similarly-flavored biscotti, instead. And while I'm all over coffee-flavored foods, might not a bit of chocolate make it just that much better?

In the end, I used David Lebovitz' recipe for chocolate biscotti as a starting point and used the flavorings from the shortbread recipe. The resulting cookies are the quite delicious Mocha Spice Biscotti, even better when dunked into a cup of hot coffee or cocoa.

Mocha Spice Biscotti

2 cups flour
1/2 cups cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons finely ground coffee
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350F (180C) degrees.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, coffee, and spices.

In a large bowl, beat together the 3 eggs, sugar, and vanilla extracts. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients.

Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat (or parchment). Divide the dough (it will be sticky) in half, placing both halves on the baking sheet about 3" apart. Form each dough blob into a loaf about 9" long by 5" wide x about 1" high. Bake for about 25 minutes, until the dough feels firm to the touch.

Remove loaves from oven and cool for about 15 minutes. Using a serrated knife, gently cut loaves into about 1/2" slices. Lay the cookies cut side down on two baking sheets and return to the oven for about 20 - 25 minutes, turning them over at the halfway point.

When the cookies are cool, you can drizzle them with a bit of chocolate: melt the chips in a microwave-safe bowl for about a minute on high. Take them out every twenty seconds or so and give them a stir to see if they are melted. Once melted, spoon the chocolate into a small zip-top plastic bag, twist closed, and cut off one tip to make a piping bag. Pipe squiggles onto the cookies. Allow to cool until chocolate has hardened before storing cookies in sealed containers.

Makes about 30 cookies.

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