Almond Meyer Lemon Cherry Biscotti.

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Growing up Italian, I think I was given biscotti as a teething cookie while a toddler.  I always remember them being around in a big glass jar.  The adults would imbibe in a dark coffee dipping their crunchy biscotti in between gulps.  This crunchy cookie is the favorite of kids (especially when dipped in chocolate) and adults.  The crunchier the better.  They are so versatile too.  You can add whatever your favorites are from nuts to fruits and chocolates.  My Meyer lemon tree is bursting with lemons and I wanted to use them as the fresh essence in these delectable cookies.

Ingredients:

1 cup of whole wheat flour
3/4 cup of all-purpose flour
1/4 cup of firmly packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs, beaten and at room temperature
1/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk (or whatever milk you use in your house)
2.5 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
2 tablespoons of maple syrup
1 teaspoon of almond extract
1 cup of dried fruit (I used dried tart cherries)
1/2 cup of toasted, slivered almonds
Zest from one Meyer lemon (or regular lemon)

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Line your baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper.  Set aside.

Into your stand mixer, paddle attached, blend the flours, sugar and baking powder.  Once combined, add the eggs, milk, oil, syrup and extract.  Blend to combine but avoid over mixing.  Then add the dried fruit, zest and almonds – mix this in by hand with a large spoon so to avoid breaking the nuts up into small pieces.

With floured hands, remove the dough and form it into a large egg-shape on your Silpat lined baking sheet.  If you need to, dust the dough with flour to make it less sticky.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until you start to see the edges turn a golden brown.  Remove and let cool for about 15-20 minutes.

With a serrated knife, slice the large cookie into 1/2 inch slices (see photo below).  Place the cut side down and bake for 10 minutes.  Then flip the cookies over to toast on the other side for another 6-8 minutes.  I like them really toasted and crunchy.  Remove and let cool completely before serving. Store in an airtight container.  Makes the perfect holiday gift too!

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— Knead to Cook

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