Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti
February 24, 2012 3 Comments
This week I finish an eight month internship at a major art museum in Los Angeles and I am a little sad about it. While there, I have developed relationships with people that are passionate, smart, and kind. Learning from them has made me even more sure about the career path I wish to pursue and feel an immense amount of gratitude for their mentoring, patience, and friendship. This being my senior year at UCLA and all, I have mentally prepared myself for several “lasts;” last sorority sisterhood event, last final exam, last Diddy Riese ice cream sandwich, etc. Yet, the realization of my first “last” has hit me like a cold wind and I find myself dreading my last day.
I made these chocolate pistachio biscotti for those mornings when all you want to do is linger a little longer and savor the random things that you never thought you would miss. As an intern, I did do a fair share of paperwork and heavy lifting, but it was definitely worth it for things like walking by Egyptian antiquities everyday on my way to the office and taking “art breaks” to see the latest installation of a crazy new contemporary piece or a full eighteenth century gown.
You want to start off with a cup of shelled pistachios. Pistachios are such a pain to shell, so if you just got a manicure, put on some gloves or make these when you are about to go in for some pampering. Such pretty colors; I love the mix of the aubergine and chartreuse!
Flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt: whisk altogether in a bowl.
Add three eggs (preferably at room temperature) and beat gently until a crumbly dough forms. I was admittedly quite skeptical at this step because the eggs don’t incorporate that easily into the cocoa powder, but have faith!
It will kind of look clumpy like this. That is totally okay!
In the meantime, blend together some brown sugar and butter.
Add vanilla and almond extracts. I didn’t have coffee extract (which is what the recipe suggests) but if you do, I can only imagine that it enhances the chocolate flavor in the most heavenly way. Ignore the fact that my gooey, drippy bottle of vanilla has been replaced with a more photogenic, unopened one!
Incorporate the cocoa powder/flour/egg mixture with the brown sugar/butter/extracts mixture. With the KitchenAid on medium, I got this rich, crumbly texture in about 4-5 minutes (maybe a bit more).
My favorite step: Adding the pistachios and the chocolate chips. I know every legitimate chocolatier will disagree, but I think cloudy chocolate is really pretty!
Fold the nuts and chocolate into the biscotti dough until evenly distributed.
Situate the dough on a cookie sheet and form into a log. At this point, I realized my nut/chocolate to dough ratio was a bit out of hand, so I may recommend reducing the nuts or the chocolate by 1/4 cup.
After baking and cooling, slice, flip on its side, and bake again. This ensures the biscotti have a satisfying crunch and developed flavor.
Mine came out more mini than is the norm because I thought I was clever and had enough to make two logs. Nonetheless, this allowed me to eat two on my way to work! ;)
Because the pistachios were freshly shelled and I was liberal with the chocolate chips, this biscotti definitely beats anything you’d get from a coffee chain or even from Costco (Nonni’s, anyone?). My boyfriend loved snacking on these while doing his homework and they were gone quickly. If only shelling pistachios wasn’t such a pain…
I adapted Michelle Myer’s recipe from Food and Wine’s website. You can find the ingredients and my notes reproduced below. The full recipe is here.
Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-process
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon pure coffee extract
- 1 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 7 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped, or 1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (I would consider 1 cup of chocolate chips sufficient.)
- 1 cup unsalted shelled pistachios (Maybe consider 3/4 cup of pistachios.)