I have made biscottis hundreds of time and this is my favorite recipe; since we use semolina flour with Lebanese pastries (maamoul), I figured why not with Italian cookies as well ?
The semolina flour makes delicate, crunchy and brittle biscottis. If you like harder ones, use all flour and no oil.
INGREDIENTS: Makes 30 extra-long cookies
- 3 Large eggs
- 3/4 cup to 1 cup of sugar
- 1 cup of semolina flour
- 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
- dash of salt
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
- 6 ounces of mini-chocolate chips (half a bag)
- 1 cup of chopped (peeled) pistachios
- 1 cup of toasted almonds chopped coarsely
- 2 teaspoons of orange blossom water
- 1/4 cup of orange rind
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla or other flavoring
- 2 teaspoons of anise powder (optional)
- 1/4 cup of sugar crystals (optional)
- Break the eggs into a mixing bowl. Add the sugar to the eggs and mix a bit. Place the bowl over very hot water and keep mixing until the egg mixture gets fluffy and doubles in volume; add the flavorings.
- Add the semolina, flour, baking powder and salt to the egg mixture. Mix until combined. Add the mini-chocolate chips and the chopped nuts. The dough should be wet but firm and sticky. Add the orange rind and mix briefly.
- Place the dough (use a rubber spatula) onto a cookie sheet lied with parchment paper. (To make the paper stick to the pan while you pour the dough, sprinkle a few teaspoons of water on the pan, then place the parchment paper on top). Sprinkle with sugar crystals if desired.
- Bake in a preheated 350F oven till the cookie dough turns golden and puffy.
- Cool, remove from the pan and cut with a serrated knife into thin slices, 1/2 cm thick(1/4 in). Place in a 200F oven for 30 minutes until the cookies are completely dry and crunchy. Serve; keep leftovers in a tight container.
TIP: In regards to the orange rind, I have noticed that when I add it at the end (when the batter is already mixed and ready to go) the flavor of orange is more noticeable than when it is mixed in the beginning with the eggs.
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