What, you say? Citrus? Almonds? Biscotti? Together? No way would that work.
I was asked to choose something to bake from a selection of amazing citrus-based recipes for my sister-in-law’s baby shower a couple months ago,
and these popped right out at me. I have never seen biscotti with citrus before, and wondered if that would really make a good connection.
Turns out, it does. It’s like a happy party in your mouth.
The citrus zest retains its brightness, even after baking, and surprisingly is not masked at all by the flours and sugar. I also used a little almond meal in place of some of the flour called for, and was very pleased with the result. The biscuit had a little more snap, and the earthy almond really did compliment that citrus! Following is my version of this recipe – I actually adjusted almost everything originally called for.
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
2 Tablespoons lemon zest
2 Tablespoons orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (one could also use almond extract here, I am sure!)
3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup almond meal
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch kosher salt
For the “topping”
1 egg, beaten
about 1/4 cup slivered almonds that you have coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a stand mixer, or mixing bowl with beaters, cream butter and sugar. Add three eggs, one at a time, until well mixed. Beat in citrus zest and vanilla.
In a separate bowl, sift together flour, almond meal, baking powder and salt. Gradually mix into butter mixture until well incorporated, but be careful not to over mix.
Divide dough into four pieces, two per baking stone or ungreased baking sheet. Shape each piece into a rectangle about 1 foot long by a couple inches wide. Ish. I never pull out my measuring tape when doing something like this, I just eyeball it. So, like I said….”ish“.
Brush the beaten egg over the top of each piece, and firmly press in the almonds.
Place 1 baking tray at a time in preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, until golden. Let cool for about 5 minutes, and carefully transfer to a cutting board. (For me, this meant two spatulas and some choice words. Perhaps using some parchment might be a good idea here? Let me know if you do that and how it worked. ) Cut into diagonal slices, about 3/4-1 inch in width. Place back on the baking sheet, cut side down and bake for about 12-15 minutes more, turning once. Remove to wire racks to cool. Store in an airtight container – whatever is left.