Cornmeal Olive Oil Biscotti with Walnut and Apricot

Cornmeal Olive Oil Biscotti with Walnut and Apricot

May 15, 2015

Cornmeal and olive oil combine to create a winning biscotti. Together they contribute an earthy sweetness and a nubby, crunchy texture without the density of traditional biscotti. They, no doubt, will accompany tea or coffee, but are perfect alone while walking the dog or snacking on the porch, rocking in your old chair.

This recipe comes from Alice Medrich’s wonderful book : Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies. The book is great. Her cookies are great. Having a copy of this book will inspire you. Buy it today.

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Ingredients

Makes 24 biscotti
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons 142 grams 5 ounces unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup 102 grams 3.6 ounces cornmeal, stoneground
  • 3/8 teaspoon 3/8 teaspoon 3/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup 98 grams 3.5 ounces extra virgin olive oil
  • 2/3 cup 130 grams 4.6 ounces white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon 1/4 teaspoon 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon 1/8 teaspoon 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 100 grams 2 large eggs
  • 1 1 1 medium lemon, finely grated zest
  • 1 1/3 cups 127 grams 4.5 ounces walnut halves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cup 80 grams 3 ounces moist, dried apricots in 1/4-inch dice

Instructions

MISE EN PLACE FOR THE COOKIE DOUGH

  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Position a rack in the center of the oven.
  • Lay a sheet of parchment onto the sheet or lightly grease it instead
  • Combine the flour, cornmeal, and baking powder in a medium bowl and whisk together thoroughly.
  • In a large bowl with an electric mixer, combine the olive oil, sugar, salt, pepper, eggs, and lemon zest.
Measure the olive oil.
Measure the olive oil.
Sugar, eggs, salt and white pepper.
Sugar, eggs, salt and white pepper.
  • Chop walnuts and apricots

MAKING THE BISCOTTI COOKIE DOUGH

  • On high speed for 3 to 4 minutes,beat the olive oil, sugar, salt, pepper, eggs and lemon zest until lightened in color and slightly thickened.
  • Set the mixer at the lowest speed and stir in the flour mixture. The batter will be thick and sticky.
Biscotti cookie dough without the nuts and fruit.
Biscotti cookie dough without the nuts and fruit.
  • Stir in the walnuts and apricots.
The cookie dough with walnuts and apricots.
The cookie dough with walnuts and apricots.
  • Scrape the batter through the center of the prepared pan and spread it to form a flat rectangle 14 to 15 inches long and 5 inches wide.
The biscotti dough set on the baking tray.
The biscotti dough set on the baking tray.

BAKE THE COOKIES

  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the dough is golden brown on top and along the lower edges. To ensure even baking, rotate the pan from front to back halfway through the baking time. The biscotti is done when there is a very slight give in the centre of the dough and when it feels firm to the touch.
Just out of the oven.
Just out of the oven.
  • Set the pan on a rack to cool for at least 15 minutes before lifting it onto a cutting surface. Leave the oven on, turning it down to 325F.
  • Transfer the uncut biscotti carefully to a cutting board. If you used parchment or a liner, slide a metal spatula under the loaf to detach and remove the liner. Use a sharp serrated knife to cut the loaf crosswise into 1/2-inch slices. Transfer the slices to the unlined cookie sheet, standing them at least 1/2 inch apart.
Freshly cut biscotti standing on a tray.
Freshly cut biscotti standing on a tray.

BAKE THE BISCOTTI FOR THE SECOND TIME

  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the edges and tops of the biscotti turn slightly golden. Rotate the pan from front to back halfway through the baking time. Set the pan on a rack. Cool the cookies completely before stacking or storing. May be kept in an airtight container for at least 2 weeks.
Bake the biscotti standing up.
Bake the biscotti standing up.

NOTE

  • Standing the biscotti on the tray for the second baking rather than laying them on their sides will keep the centre light and cake-like in texture while allowing the edges to brown and become crispy. If you lay them on their sides, the biscotti will brown through out and the texture will be dryer and crunchier.
Cornmeal Olive Oil Biscotti with Walnut and Apricot, The Finer Cookie.
Cornmeal Olive Oil Biscotti with Walnut and Apricot, The Finer Cookie.

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