Chocolate Biscotti with Sliced Almonds

Addictive….. simply addictive!  That’s the best description I can think of for these chocolate biscotti.  Being Italian, I have made and bought my share of biscotti.  These easily rank in the top three of my favorite biscotti—ever.

I first saw the original version of this recipe in the November 1999 issue of Bon Appétit.  The recipe called for hazelnuts instead of almonds, and that was how I made the biscotti the first time.  As much as I love the chocolate-hazelnut combination, known as gianduia, I thought these biscotti would be better suited to almonds.  The next time I made them, I used sliced almonds and almond meal in place of the hazelnuts; and a new biscotti star was born.

These biscotti are so deliciously crunchy and chocolate-y with a wonderful almond flavor that it is next to impossible to stop eating them after just one.  I would suspect anyone who can of having had a tastebud-ectomy.

Because you can make and freeze them for up to three weeks, they make a great Christmas gift if you’re as into giving holiday goodies from your kitchen as I am.  Plan on making plenty because you’ll want to keep a large number of them for yourself!

Chocolate Biscotti with Sliced Almonds

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup sliced almonds, toasted 2 to 3 minutes
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line two heavy large baking sheets with parchment paper.  Set aside. Whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt in large bowl.  Beat butter and sugar in another large bowl to blend.  Add eggs and vanilla and almond extracts and beat until well blended.  Beat in flour mixture.  Mix in 1 cup sliced almonds, chocolate chips and 1/2 cup ground almonds.

Divide dough into 4 equal pieces.  Shape pieces (two per sheet) on two large baking sheets into 2-inch-wide by 9-inch-long logs.  Place logs on prepared baking sheets, spacing 3 inches apart (logs will spread quite a bit during baking).

Leave plenty of space between logs - they will spread.

Bake until logs feel firm when tops are gently pressed, about 35 minutes.  Cool logs on baking sheets 15 minutes.  Maintain oven temperature.

Using long wide spatula, transfer baked logs to cutting board.  Using serrated knife, cut warm logs crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Arrange slices, cut side down, on 2 baking sheets.

Bake biscotti until firm, about 15 minutes.  Transfer to racks and cool completely.  (Biscotti can be prepared ahead.  Store in airtight container up to 4 days, or wrap in foil and freeze in resealable plastic bags up to 3 weeks.)

Source:   Adapted from a recipe in the November 1999 issue of Bon Appétit

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