These are cookbook author Thalia Ho’s ideal biscotti, full of intrigue in flavor, texture and tone. The best part about them is the white chocolate, which takes on a deep and sweet caramelized flavor during baking. It shines wonderfully against the nuts, herbs and bright candied citrus peel.
Active time: 1 hour; Total time: 2 hours 55 mins
Storage Notes: The biscotti can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks, or frozen for up to 1 month.
Tested size: 36 biscotti
2/3 cup (80 grams) whole blanched almonds (may substitute slivered almonds)
3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon fine sea or table salt
1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest (from 1 orange)
11 tablespoons (1 stick plus 3 tablespoons/150 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 large eggs, at room temperature, plus 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
4 ounces (115 grams; or 2/3 cup) chopped white chocolate or white chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped (80 grams) candied citrus peel, such as orange
Demerara sugar or sparkling sugar, for sprinkling
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
Arrange the almonds on a small, rimmed baking sheet and toast for 10 to 12 minutes, until fragrant and lightly browned, shaking halfway through. Transfer to a plate or cutting board, let cool completely and then chop. (If using slivered almonds, they will toast faster — start checking at 6 or 7 minutes. You can leave them as is or coarsely chop.) Alternatively, you can toast the nuts in a dry skillet over low heat.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, rosemary and salt.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a large bowl and a handheld mixer, add the sugar and orange zest and beat on medium speed until very fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the butter and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, and scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl in between. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture and mix until incorporated. Mix in the chocolate, citrus peel and almonds until evenly distributed.
Scrape the sticky dough onto the prepared baking sheet and divide into three even portions, patting each into a rough log shape. Cover and refrigerate until firm, 1 hour.
Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Line another large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
Lightly flour your work surface and transfer the chilled dough onto it; lightly dust the top of the dough with more flour. Shape each piece into a log about 4 inches (10 centimeters) wide and 1/2-inch (1 1/3 centimeters) thick, dusting as needed to prevent sticking. Divide the logs between the lined baking sheets (replacing or wiping clean the parchment or silicone mat on the first pan, if needed) leaving a few inches of space between the logs on the sheet holding two.
Using a pastry brush, brush the tops with the beaten egg white and sprinkle with demerara or sparkling sugar.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until just firm and golden, rotating the pans from top to bottom and front to back halfway through. Let the logs cool on the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer to a cutting board. Using a sharp serrated knife, slice into 1/2-inch (1 1/3-centimeter) thick pieces. Set them onto the sheet, cut side facing up, then return to the oven. Continue to bake for an additional 12 to 18 minutes, rotating from top to bottom and front to back halfway through, until golden brown all over.
Let the biscotti cool on the pans for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before serving or storing.
From Thalia Ho, author of “Wild Sweetness: Recipes Inspired by Nature” (Harper Design, 2021).
Tested by Becky Krystal.
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