My grandmother used to make the most amazing biscotti. They were flavored with cinnamon and vanilla. She would bake the logs and then slice them while they were still warm. The ends of the logs that did not form into the perfect ovals that she cut on a bias were called "damages". As she would be putting the ovals in a 'keep warm' oven to dry out, I can hear her say, "Who's gonna eat the "Damages". There were always biscotti in her freezer.
When I became a pastry chef one of the things I loved to do was to adapt my Grandmother's recipes to current ingredients and tastes. When my daughter was born and we decided to raise her vegan I had the opportunity to revisit and adapt all of her recipes again. I think that is what I love about cooking–the constant variables between ingredients and eaters and tastes renders recipes to loose guidelines away from rigid instruction.
The perpetual iterations of my Grandmother's Biscotti have led me to these Chocolate Treats:
Chocolate Chocolate Biscotti
2 1/2 cups all purpose unbleached flour
2 1/2 cups spelt flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 1/2 cup sugar plus extra for rolling
1/4 cup cornmeal
4 teaspoons baking powder
large pinch of salt
16 tablespoons non hydrogenated margarine, such as Earth Balance cut into 10 pieces
1 cup silk tofu pureed
2 tablespoons water
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chunks
2 cups rough chopped walnuts
1.In a mixer combine flours, cocoa, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder and salt.
2.Add margarine and mix until texture is like sand.
3.Add tofu and water mix until just combined. Add chocolate chips and walnuts mix until just combined.
4.Roll biscotti into logs and then roll in sugar and himalayan salt until just coated.
5.Bake in 350 degree oven until just cooked through, about 20 minutes.
6.Remove biscotti from oven and slice into 1/4 inch slices. Turn off oven.
7.Return biscotti to turned off oven and let sit in oven until dry, about 3 hours to overnight.
I am making these biscotti for take home gifts for diners at our Home Restaurant this weekend.