Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Chocolate and Almond Biscotti (Donna Hay)

I have noticed that the weather at Melbourne has been cooling down lately. Although today is going to be a warm autumn day, tonight will not be as warm as more than 20°C.

Due to the weather change, I have been drinking tea lately...

I'm never a tea or coffee drink but lately during moments of stress, I like to stop doing everything, keep calm, sit back, relax and have a cup of tea... My favourite are usually the fruity and caffeine free ones like these from Twinings.

I like a quiet afternoon, a cup of tea with a slice or two guilt-free cakes or biscuits... something like biscotti.

Wait up now, Zoe! Let's stop dreaming and bake something. Besides a cup of tea, baking can be very therapeutic for me too.

Being a health freak, anything with no butter and oil added or less sugar sounds to me. Yes that I know that these twice-baked Donna Hay's chocolate biscotti contains about 3/4 cup of sugar but the sweetness in these rich cocoa and almond treats is well-hidden and
pretty subtle. In fact, you probably need a lot senses to detect any fat and the hint of sweetness of these treats.

Otherwise, the best way to enjoy these... A quiet afternoon, a cup of tea with a couple of chocolate biscotti... Anybody?

chocolate almond biscotti Donna Hay
Cuppa... Anybody?
Making these biscotti is super-easy. Just mix ...
... and bake!
... and bake again! Enjoy!

Here's the recipe from the book, Simple Essential: Chocolate by Donna Hay
(with my modification and notes in blue)

Make 40
270g plain flour, sifted
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
30g cocoa powder, sifted
(I used Valrhona Dutch processed ones)
165g caster sugar
3/4 cup blanched almonds
3 eggs
(I used large 80g eggs)
2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 160°C (or 150°C fan forced) . Place the flour, baking powder, cocoa, sugar and almonds in a bowl and mix together. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well to form a dough. Note: Depending on the size of the eggs used, dough can be sticky but I didn't add any flour to fine-tune the consistency of my dough

Divide the dough in two. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead each piece until smooth. Shape into logs and flatten slightly. Place the logs on a baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper and bake for 35 mins. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. 

Cut logs into slices 5mm thick and place on baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper. Bake for 25 mins or until biscotti are crisp. Note: Like I mentioned in my previous biscotti baking, I like my biscotti to be rather less teeth-crunching and bake mine for 10 to12 mins.

Note: Using 1 1/2 of the recipe, I have used 280g of blanched almond to bake 3 biscotti logs at 150°C fan forced for 35 mins, sliced the logs into 50 biscotti and baked them again 150°C fan forced for 10 to 12 mins.

Happy Baking
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  1. I love chocolate biscotti's with nuts, this one looks awesome.

  2. Beautiful, beautiful biscotti. The weather is cooling in Melbourne... hopefully getting warmer in Portugal. One of my funniest past memories is of my cousins, who live in Melbourne, coming once to Portugal during our Winter with only t-shirts because they were coming from warm weather. They tried to dodge the bullet (people asking them "Aren't you cold???") buh ah!, they were everywhere. ;)

  3. make it 2 cups fer me! very nice biscotti you have there and you are tempting me to bake this .... gosh.. my to bake list is piling up!!

  4. Hi Zoe,
    Baking is very therapeutic to me too!
    You have baked very nice biscotti and yes I want.
    I want to go with Earl Grey Tea please.

  5. Yummy and my favorite biscotti

  6. Gorgeous Biscotti Zoe......Yz...tz wonderful to have a cup of and something to munch in a quiet afternoon......and this biscotti with nuts z perfect one! I feel that I too want it with a cup of tea :)

  7. I'm imagining biscotti dunked in Milo (I don't drink tea or coffee, heh)..

  8. Zoe, I have never eaten biscotti before. Baking is definitely therapeutic but I sometimes make it stressful by panicking. LOL!

  9. My first attempt with biscottis was a disaster, though it tasted awesome, it did not hold shape at all! this looks so good, with all those nuts... bookmarked!

  10. Hi Zoe,
    I'm wishing that I could join you for tea! I love your beautiful teacup and saucer, and the biscotti looks perfect for tea-time!

  11. Pick me pick me please! Chocolate biscotti look so special! As for the weather, we are also experiencing some chill here, night time can be this cold too & both my kids look so cute with their warm PJs, hehe.

  12. Galletas espectacular me encanta con un rico tè,abrazos.

  13. Z, these look so delicious. I've never made biscotti before. Looks like I'll be getting baking this w/end!

  14. I don't drink coffee or caffeinated tea either. My choice of tea recently is ginger tea for my cold. This biscotti is go well with black bean tea- my other favorite tea. Non caffeinated and reduce sugar into fat...so I was told. I have never tried biscotti before but this looks enticing. I love your tea cup.

  15. Hi Zoe , the biscotti is just beautiful and I know it's delicious , thanks so much for sharing :)

  16. They look so cute and the sliced almonds in each slice gives such a contrast to the dark chocolate background. Simply pretty and surely a great hit!!

  17. The weather here is not warming up at all and we'll be going into Spring soon! I would love to have quiet a cup of tea with you and those chocolate biscotti, Zoe. They look just perfect! Thank you so much for sharing...

  18. I have not try biscotti and not knowing how it tastes. Sure will refer your post once I feel like baking some one day.

  19. Zoe nice to meet you!
    I don't speak english very well, but now I used google to translate the recipie of your wonderful cookies!!
    So.. see you soon

  20. We're starting to warm up just a bit, so eventually our temperatures will match! For a brief period. ;-) Lovely biscotti -- you're right that this would be wonderful with tea. Or all by itself! Good stuff -- thanks.

  21. Hello, nice to meet you, thanks for coming to me, I will follow you too, your cookies are fabulous and beautifully photographed, greetings from Italy :-)

  22. Hi Zoe,
    thanks for your visit and your nice comment on my blog. I welcome you as my new reader and I am so happy that you are from Melbourne. My daughter spent some months in Australia in 2012 and also visited Melbourne. She enjoyed it so much! Being curious, I paid a visit to your blog and found delicious recipes also from Donna Hay. I also have 2 books from her and like the light and fresh fotos! So, I feel very much connected :).
    Have a nice week,

  23. This sure looks good with a cup of hot tea!

  24. The power of a cup of tea should never be underestimated! I like the cold weather because it's a great excuse to drink tea allllll day!! I love the sound of your "healthy" biscotti to help extend that moment of peace :)