Saturday, February 12, 2011

Biscotti for Your Sweetheart





Show your sweetie that you love them by making a treat that's both tasty and heart healthy! Thanks to olive oil, walnuts, whole grain flour, and pure raw cacao, these crunchy cookies are packed with omega-3s, fiber, and antioxidants! Like all biscotti, they are perfect for dunking in coffee, tea, milk, or even dessert wine!

A Few Notes on the Ingredients:

1) This was our first time baking with spelt flour, a whole grain that is related to wheat. We picked up a bag of spelt flour a few weeks ago, mostly because we like to experiment with new ingredients. You can bake with spelt flour just as you would with wheat flour, and you can also substitute whole wheat flour for the spelt if you can't or don't want to give it a try.

2) The cacao we used in this recipe is organic, pure raw cacao from Costa Rica - it was a gift from a friend, by way of a co-worker who is looking to start a side business importing it. The cacao is a solid block, and because it is pure cacao it is dairy free and completely unsweetened. Alfred is not a huge chocolate fan, but he loved the wonderful aroma and taste this cacao gave the cookies! If you can't find a comparable product, you can use bittersweet or dark chocolate in its place - look for the highest cacao content possible, the higher the cacao content the deeper the chocolate flavor and the more antioxidants!

Heart Healthy Biscotti
1 1/4 Cups All-Purpose Flour (preferably unbleached)
1 Cup Spelt Flour (or Whole Wheat Flour)
1 teaspoon Sea Salt
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 Cup Sugar (preferably a minimally processed sugar such as evaporated cane juice, raw sugar, or palm sugar)
1 Egg
1/2 Cup Buttermilk
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1 Cup toasted Walnuts, coarsely chopped
1/2 Cup finely grated Cacao (or Bittersweet or Dark Chocolate)*

*We just used a box grater to grate the chocolate into fine shavings. You could also chop the chocolate or cacao into small pieces if you would prefer to have some distinct chocolately chunks.

1) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two large sheet pans with parchment paper or foil (shiny side up).
2) In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
3) In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the egg, milk, and oil.
4) Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir until thoroughly combined. Stir in the nuts and cacao/chocolate.
5) Divide the dough evenly between the two sheet pans, forming logs about 10 inches long and 4 inches wide.
6) Bake the logs 20-25 minutes, rotating the pans half way through until the logs are lightly browned and firm to the touch.
7) Let the logs cool. Meanwhile, line your sheet pans with new parchment/foil.
8) Once the logs are cool, cut them into 1/2 inch slices. Lay the slices cut side down on the prepared sheet pans, leaving space between them.
9) Bake the biscotti for 10 minutes, then flip them over and bake another 10-15 minutes until lightly browned.

The cookies will crisp up as they cool, let them cool completely before storing them.

Happy Valentine's Day To All - We hope your day is extra SWEET!

P.S. If you want to fancy these up a little more for Valentine's Day, a little drizzling of melted dark chocolate wouldn't be a bad idea!

As usual, I've also included this post as part of several weekly recipe sharing events: Midnight Maniac Meatless Mondays , Making Monday Marvelous, Just Something I Whipped Up, My Meatless Mondays, Just Another Meatless Monday, Slightly Induglent Tuesday, Tempt my Tummy Tuesday, Tasty Tuesdays , Tuesdays at the Table, Real Food Wednesdays, Whatcha Makin' Wednesdays, Full Plate Thursday, Friday Foodie, and Friday Favorites. Check out all the great recipes other bloggers have contributed!

10 comments:

  1. What a perfect accompaniment to an afternoon coffee break! I like the idea of using spelt flour and olive oil, too. Have a great week!

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  2. Miriam - thank you for stopping by, we hope you had a great Valentine's Day!

    Judy - Alfred couldn't taste any difference with the spelt (he is sometimes leary of the whole grains I force upon him!), so I plan to use it a lot more often from now on! I always bake with olive oil - it's the only oil we keep in our house, it's great! Have a great week too!

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  3. I love biscotti and yours look perfect. Love the heart healthy options. :) Thanks for sharing.

    Amy
    http://utry.it

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  4. Wow a chunk of cacoa? so lucky!

    Thanks for linking up to Just Another Meatless Monday!

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  5. These healthy biscotti are very tempting! My first attemps to bake biscotti have not yet been successful, I will try this one soon :-)

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  6. Hi Amy - thanks for stopping by we hope you like the recipe!

    Laura - We are lucky indeed! Thanks as always for hosting JAMM!

    Vanessa - In the past Alfred has complained that the biscotti I baked nearly broke his teeth. I saw a recipe that used buttermilk, saying it made the biscotti light and crunchy, rather than hard and brittle. Alfred says these fit that bill, they are crunchy, but not teeth shattering :). Let us know how the recipe turns out for you!

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  7. I just love a good Biscotti with my afternoon tea and your recipe looks so delicious. Thank you so much for bringing it to Full Plate Thursday and please come back!

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  8. I love that this recipe includes healthy ingredients. It sounds wonderful.

    I'm hosting a weekly linky, Sweet Tooth Friday, I'd love for you to share your recipe. http://alli-n-son.com/2011/02/17/chocolate-chip-toffee-bars/

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  9. Thanks Miz Helen!

    Hi Allison - thank you for stopping by and for the invitation. Sadly we didn't see your comment soon enough to take part in Sweet Tooth Friday last week - but we plan on linking up this week!

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