Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Biscotti treats a day early...

Jeff is working from home tomorrow, so we bumped up the Wednesday Treat Day to today - I actually made these Bittersweet Chocolate, Hazelnut and Ginger Biscotti, but didn't get a chance to snap some photos until this morning before he brought them in.

If you have been reading this site for any length of time, you will know how much we love biscotti! There are just endless ways to change the flavor and you can even tinker with the texture to get ultra-crisp biscotti that ache to be dipped in something or ones that are a little softer (usually made with butter) that are great to be eaten as is. These biscotti fall somewhere in between those two - still crisp, yet not so hard that they are tough to chew. They are amped up with two types of chocolate- natural cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate chips. You could certainly change the nut to one of your liking, but these crunchy toasted hazelnuts are a perfect match to the rich chocolate. For a touch of sweet heat, finely diced crystallized ginger is also tossed into the slightly sticky batter. If you find it too sticky when you are forming the biscotti on the baking sheets, you can lightly wet your hands instead of adding a bunch of flour which may make them tough.

Once baked, the biscotti need to cool on the baking sheets for about 15 minutes - before cutting, we lightly spritzed the loaves with water and let them sit for another 5 minutes. I've been using this method ever since we tried it a few months ago - it has done wonders to help get very clean slices without a bunch of crumbs. The slices go back into the oven to dry out a bit and are then left to cool completely. For a classy touch, we melted some good-quality white chocolate in a double boiler and drizzled the creamy chocolate over the top of some of the biscotti. Not everyone loves this type of chocolate... we opted to do this to just do about half of the biscotti so his co-workers would have a choice. Here's a quick snap of how we plated it for Jeff to bring in.

Tonight's dinner of this Apple and Cheddar Frittata, had our tastebuds tingling and working overtime trying to figure out if this sweeter take on a frittata is something we really liked or not. This is a completely simple dish composed of beaten whole eggs, along with some egg whites and sharp white cheddar, that are poured into a skillet seasoned with melted butter. The egg mixture is then topped with a circular pattern of thinly sliced Gala apples from the outside in. The apples are then adorned with a bit more shredded cheese and the whole shebang goes into the oven for a quick bake. We watched through the oven door as the eggs came to life from the heat in the oven and slowly puffed up above the rim of the skillet. This dish was good, but not something we would probably make again - I'm just not sure that either of us like the combination of apple and cheddar in this form. The apples had just enough texture to them so they still had a bite, but the sweetness was just a little odd against the sharp cheese with the soft fluffy eggs for us.


  1. I hope the biscotti didn't fall over in the car on the way in! ;-) My dad really likes biscotti, especially with his coffee.

  2. I love biscotti too, and yours look great, like the icing as well, very pretty :)

    Your frittata sounds and looks good as well, I like fruit in main course food!

  3. I love the biscotti, Joe, with and without the white chocolate! :)

  4. Did I ever mention my middle name is biscotti? Yummm! I love the Frittata - the apple? Very cool.

  5. Claire - Jeff said he drove very carefully, but I have a feeling some reassembly was needed!

    Kelly - Thanks!

    Patricia - yeah! So easy to throw together and very tasty!

    Chris - Hmm... I think we must share a common middle name then!