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Welcome to delicious Destinations, a GourmetStation blog. Through the charater of T.Alexander and occasional real-life guests, our aim is to share with you light-hearted fun ideas about food, gift giving, entertaining and culture. At the same time we would love you hear from you. Please share your experiences from home or abroad.

Biscotti


Posted: January 27, 2008
by: Mark Stine

I love biscotti, as I am sure many of you do. Especially, the kind of biscotti that is dipped in dark chocolate on one end and served with a very strong dark coffee…ahhh…what a way to spend an afternoon in repose...meditating over a nice strong cup of coffee, with chocolate biscotti.  Just my preference…or so I thought.

I recently received a large gift basket of homemade “Rosemary Biscotti” from my friend “Rhubarb Barb”…a recipe contributor and comrade in arms go anywhere dining companion from a past gourmetstation blog on pies. Rhubarb pies to be specific.

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The wonderful thing about the rosemary Biscotti was that it wasn’t overly sweet…or really sweet at all, but had a wonderful earthy natural flavor of rosemary and currants. An exceptional flavor profile as we used to say in the fast food business when sampling some new food offering that exceeded expectations...”yes a wonderful flavor profile.”

Well…as I thought more about it, where did biscotti come from? So I did a little research.

Well, obviously from the spelling, it had Italian origins and that much I knew. So after a little online digging I uncovered that “biscotto” means cookie and getting into the structure of the word reveals that the latin bis and coctum later becoming the Italian cotto means something like twice baked…the original process to prepare the traditional biscotti we are all used to eating. The twice baking gave the cookie the “finish” and crunch and provided the consistency. It was also used in those early roman times as a long shelf life baked good for easy transport and flavored with almond.

Well I am all for convenience and I also discovered online a device to allow for a faster baking process for those who have to worry about time and labor and energy costs. (It’s called Pipe and Bake System…google it under biscotti if you want to know more) They have figured out a whole new way to achieve the same results in a faster time frame then twice baking. Hmmm...does that then make this new product an “unacotti”??... once baked or from a traditionalists view point “half baked”…a subject no doubt for a future episode of Rachel Ray.

Well, even though biscotti is supposed to last a long, long time, at least from a perishable stand point, the rather large amount of rosemary biscotti that Barb sent me was gone in a week. What can I say… alone…with no shame and a hot beverage to wash it down, why the biscotti became my nightly and afternoon snack…and best new friend.

So if you would like to try some very tasty rosemary biscotti, Barb has included the credited recipe below.

Wedding Biscotti
Recipe courtesy Katie Lee Joel

Wedding Biscotti
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried currants

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt, and 
rosemary. Set aside.

Using an electric mixer and a large mixing bowl, beat butter and 
sugar together until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the eggs, 
1 at a time, incorporating each egg fully before adding the next. Add 
the vanilla. and gently stir in the flour mixture until just 
combined. Stir in currants.

Cut dough in half and shape into 2 logs. They should be about a 12-
inches long; and 1-inch thick.

Bake until just starting to brown at the edges, about 35 minutes. Let 
cool for a few minutes on the baking sheets. While the biscotti logs 
are still warm, cut each log into 1/2-inch wide slices on the 
diagonal. Place the slices back on the baking sheet (using 2 baking 
sheets if necessary to fit all the slices). Bake for 7 to 8 minutes. 
Remove the baking sheets from the oven. Turn the biscotti over and 
bake for an additional 7 to 8 minutes, until the biscotti are crisp.

Let the biscotti cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet(s). Serve 
when cooled to room temperature, or store in an airtight container 
for up to 2 weeks.

There you have it. A great afternoon of baking and enjoyment and keep your friends in mind as it makes a great personalized gift……I know!

Mark Stine

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Your Comments

Mark, You omitted the rosemary. How much?

Posted by: Irene at Feb 4, 2009 1:37:24 PM