White Chocolate & Almond Biscotti

If you’re a biscotti person, then this recipe is for you. Why? Because this biscotti is deliciously sweet, studded with pieces of white chocolate and has the crunch of toasted almonds. It doesn’t break your teeth when you try to bite into it without dipping it into hot coffee first. And, it still hold its shape if you’re into the whole dunking cookies into tea thing.

This recipe has been adapted from ‘The Ghirardelli Chocolate Cookbook’, the 1995 edition, which my aunt gifted me from her cookbook collection. Needless to say, I used Ghirardelli White Chocolate Chips which I hoarded back from Chicago earlier this year. January 2020, to be precise when the world still seemed travel and on the whole, more friendly.

My trip to Chicago was the last and only holiday I took this year. Had I known that this was it, I would have definitely bought half the Ghirardelli store and brought it back with me to Delhi. Not kidding. Also, perhaps a truckload of Cheetos Flaming Hot because they’re the best snack to munch on and as a responsible adult, I can make these healthy choices.

Anyway, my mantra this year is to keep reminding myself to “Make Lemonade”, in every little sense possible. I have become a “To-Do” list making fiend. I am not even close to ticking off every item on that list. This blog post is one of the items, and so here I am, making lemonade with a side of the best biscotti you’re going to make and feed yourself and/or your loved ones.

Without deviating from the topic at hand, the original recipe from the Cookbook features a ‘Double Chocolate-Hazelnut Biscotti’. I’m definitely a double chocolate person, but NOT a hazelnut person. Let’s just say I have borderline trust issues with those ordering sugary hazelnut coffee beverages. And, of course with the real devils, the ones who slather Nutella over EVERYTHING.

In my version of the White Chocolate & Almond Biscotti, you can switch out the white chocolate chips for milk or dark, but please don’t come at me about how white chocolate isn’t real chocolate to begin with. It tastes fabulous when used sparingly, so please. Meanwhile, once this biscotti converts you and your phobia that makes you stay away from the paler cousin of “real” chocolate, you might want to try out my White Chocolate & Raspberry Blondies – another FAB recipe.

Here’s what you need:

(The recipe makes about 2 Dozen Large Biscottis – Pshhh! American portions, am I right?)

  • 2 1/4 Cups of Flour
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 2 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
  • Nice pinch of salt
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 Tsp Almond Extract (Vanilla works, if you don’t have almond extract handy)
  • 1 Cup Chopped Almonds
  • 3/4 Cup of White Chocolate Chips

Here’s what you need to do:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees, prepare two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, sugar, baking power, baking soda, almonds and white chocolate chips. In a separate bowl, break in the eggs and trickle in the almond extract. Stir until well blended.

Start stirring the dry ingredients and pour in the egg mixture, little by little, making sure its well incorporated. Once the last bit of the egg mixture is incorporated in the mix, you want to stir until a rather wet dough comes together. (Don’t panic)

I divided the batter into two, which resulted in rather longish biscuits, but you can divide it into four too depending on how big your baking sheets are. So depending on how much dough you have and how big you want your biscuits (in this case, bigger is always better :P).

Once the dough is divided, on the prepared baking sheets, using lightly floured hands, shape each portion into 2x 10inch logs. When I was making it – I made one giant log which was more like 5x10inch . This in no way will effect your baking time or the way they taste. So again, depending on whether you’re making the whole recipe, or a half recipe – shape the biscotti logs.

The logs should be about 4 inches apart, so that they don’t come together into one massive mass.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until the edges begin to turn golden. They are done when the logs are firm to touch. Remove the baking trays from the oven. Let the biscotti mass cool for 15 mins or until cool enough to handle.

Lower the oven temperature to 150 degrees.

Transfer one log to a cutting board and cut into 1 inch wide cookies. Repeat with the remaining logs. Place the biscottis (cut side up) for their ‘bi’ bake. Bake for 20 mins until crisp and golden. Once done, remove from the oven, let it cool and check for crispness.

Let them cook completely before consuming, or in my case, diet coke works wonders to aid a burned tongue.

You can store these in an air tight container for 3-4 days (if they haven’t been finished already)

I hope you like them!

Red Jalapeño Poppers

IMG_0266-1

My favorite favorite party snack! I have NO idea what restaurants in Delhi serve as Jalapeño Poppers, they’re  basically frozen cheese balls with NO chili in it. This my friend, is the real deal.

And the best part is that the breadcrumbs are homemade, so you can flavor it with whatever you want. Also, don’t remove the seeds from the peppers if you like extra heat.

They’re hot, crispy, spicy, cheesy and gooey all at the same time. I didn’t have any bacon on me at the time I made these bad boys. Fry the bacon and stuff it in the peppers along with the cheeses you use. You can never go wrong with bacon.

So here’s the recipe.IMG_0249-1

Red Jalapeño Poppers

Ingredients:

3 Slices of bread

Salt & Pepper

Parmesan Cheese (for the breadcrumbs)

5-6 Jalapeños

A preferred blend of cheeses. I used cream cheese, sharp cheddar and gouda.

Green onion greens finally chopped

Half a garlic clove

a  handful of Coriander leaves

Flour for dredging

2 Eggs

Oil for Frying

Method:

For the breadcrumbs:

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees.

Break the bread into chunks and throw it into a blender along with the parmesan and coriander leaves. Blitz it till it resembles breadcrumbs.

Sprinkle the crumbs in a baking tray, and bake it till the bread crumbs dehydrate (about 8-10mins). DO NOT let it brown.

Cheese Blend:

Mix the cheese blend really well together. Finely chop the garlic and add it to the cheese a long with the green onion. Season the cheese blend according to the saltiness of the cheese. Try not to over season it.

Jalapeños:

To prep the Jalapenos, make a T cut in it. Slit it down lengthwise and cut right below the stem area to form a T. Stuff the cheese blend in the peppers. Don’t worry about over stuffing it because the breading will make sure the cheese doesn’t ooze out.

Once the peppers are ready, beat the eggs in a bowl and set it aside.

Spread some flour on a plate.

Dredge the peppers first in the flour, then the eggs, followed by the breadcrumbs. If you feel the coating is too light and wouldn’t stay, then re-dip it in the egg and breadcrumbs again.

Let the peppers rest for 10 mins in the fridge until the coating firms up.

Note: When you fry the peppers, the breadcrumbs will brown really fast, so keep an eye on it, and preferably fry one pepper at a time.

Once Browned, bake the whole lot in the oven at 180 degrees, until piping hot and super crispy.

Belt it.

IMG_0259-1