one of my favorite jobs was working at a coffee shop in college. not only did i make some really great friends and meet some very strange people (like the guy who liked to stand outside the coffee shop and lick the window??) - i learned a lot about coffee. i had always been a coffee drinker but that was the time in my life i really fell in love with it. maybe it had something to do with coffee was the only thing keeping me alive in those days! who am i kidding - it still is.
my grandma taught me to drink coffee. the rules were simple - nothing, and i mean nothing - was to go in the cup besides coffee. if you could see through the coffee - it was too weak and was deemed to be crap. milk and/or cream was out of the question as well. she taught me that nothing was worth drinking except a good thick dark cup of coffee. grandma could love our espresso machine!
she also had opinions about dunking stuff in coffee - it was out of the question. she would usually have something - like a cookie - with her coffee but it was never dunked into the coffee.
while working at the coffee shop i discovered biscotti. at first - it felt like a betrayal to grandma - but i reasoned that if she had ever had a biscotti she would quickly change her coffee rules. at the shop, we had a raspberry chocolate white chocolate biscotti and it was to die for. the raspberry flavor was subtle - the chocolate tasted like chocolate and the little bits of white chocolate would melt a little bit in the coffee. i have always wanted to find a recipe that would come close to these biscotti but never have.
i was on david lebovitz's site one day and i came across his chocolate biscotti recipe. the biscotti looked amazing - so close to what i remember from the coffee shop. when i looked through the recipe i noticed that there was almond extract so i figured i could sub out the almond for raspberry extract and maybe get close to the biscotti i loved so much.
these biscotti came dangerously close to what i wanted. the chocolate flavor was intense - the white chocolate chunks added some good texture - but the raspberry flavor didn't come through as much as i had hoped. the addition of the espresso powder was good- it really enhanced the chocolate. all in all - these biscotti are amazing - and so close to what i hoped they would be.
i have not given up my quest for my perfect biscotti recipe but these will do nicely until i find it.
chocolate white chocolate biscotti
adapted from david lebovitz
2 cups flour
3/4 cups top-quality cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon raspberry extract (david used almond)
1 cup white chocolate chunks
For the glaze
1 large egg
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
2. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. In a large bowl, beat together the 3 eggs, sugar, espresso powder and vanilla & raspberry extracts. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients, then mix in the white chocolate until the dough holds together.
4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Divide the dough in half. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into two logs the length of the baking sheet. Transfer the logs onto the baking sheet, evenly spaced apart.
5. Gently flatten the tops of the logs. Beat the remaining egg and brush the tops of the logs liberally with the egg. (You won't use it all). Sprinkle the tops with the turbinado and bake for 25 minutes, until the dough feels firm to the touch.
6. Remove the cookie dough from the oven and cool 15 minutes. On a cutting board, use a serrated bread knife to diagonally cut the cookies into 1/2-inches slices. Lay the cookies cut side down on baking sheets and return to the oven for 20 to 30 minutes, turning the baking sheet midway during baking, until the cookies feel mostly firm.
Once baked, cool the cookies completely then store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.
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