31 March 2012

Vanilla Chocolate Chip Biscotti

No, I haven't started making loads of sweet, sugary, chocolate-y stuff again. I promise. I'm still eating very healthy and am still running every second day. Yay me!

This is a recipe I made some 4 or 6 weeks ago, I just haven't gotten round to writing anything about it before now...

So: Biscotti. My first encounter with them happened when I was about 8. We had gone to Italy for summer hols and my mum had brought back bags and bags of some sort of biscuits she called cantuccini. They looked like slices of a very narrow and flat baguette, had almonds in them, and smelled like marzipan. All in all, to me, a huge marzipan fan, they were very appealing. I tried one and I fell in love. Only I couldn't (and still can't) understand why they always have to be rock hard. Honestly, a biscuit that can (and at some point very propably will) break your teeth? Where's the fun in that?


At some point, we stopped spending most of the summer in Italy, and I forgot about the biscotti. But then, some time ago, biscotti recipes started turning up all over foodblogs everywhere. And not only the classic almond version but also chocolate, double chocolate, cranberry, walnut, or even candied lemon (yikes! No offense, I just hate candied lemon).
The recipe I liked the most was a simple chocolate chip version on A Full Measure of Happiness. And, of course, I didn't bake them as long as I should have, making them still a bit soft and chewy and sooo much more enjoyable. No fear of breaking teeth. 

Vanilla Chocolate Chip Biscotti

3 eggs
1 sachet vanilla sugar (preferably one with real bourbon vanilla and not just artificial vanillin)
220 g/2 cups flour
110 g/1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
175 g/1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 tsp of real vanilla or the seeds from 1 vanilla pod

Preheat the oven to 150° C/300° F.

Combine all the dry ingredients except for the chocolate chips, then add the eggs. Stir and knead until well combined, then add the chocolate chips.

Lightly grease a baking tray or line it with baking parchment. Divide the dough in half, form each half into a long roll (as long as your baking tray), place them on the tray and flatten slightly. Put into the oven and bake for about an hour until all golden and pretty.

Let the loaves cool until they're safe to touch, then cut each loaf into 2 cm/1 in slices. If you like your biscotti chewy and still slightly soft, leave them to cool and then store in an airtight container. If, however, you like them rock hard, return them to the oven to dry at 90° C/200° F. I can't tell you how long because I've never tried it and because, I'll say it again and again, why anyone would want teeth-breaking biscuits is completely beyond me.

Buon appetito!

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