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Cherry Almond Biscotti

Tempting Treat: Cherry Almond Biscotti Delight

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Get ready to elevate your coffee break to new heights with a delectable recipe that combines the irresistible flavors of cherry and almond in a delightful biscotti – introducing Cherry Almond Biscotti! These crunchy yet tender cookies are perfect for dipping into your favorite hot beverage or enjoying as a standalone treat. With the perfect balance of sweetness from dried cherries and the nutty aroma of almonds, they’re sure to become a favorite among family and friends. So, let’s dive into the world of biscotti-making and indulge in the divine flavors of Cherry Almond Biscotti together!

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup slivered almonds (slightly chopped)
  • 1/3 cup coarse sugar crystals
  • 1 cup dried cherries (slightly chopped)

Optional for Chocolate Dipped Biscotti:

  • 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips or white chocolate baking squares, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon shortening

Instructions

  1. Preheat Oven and Prep: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  2. Combine Dry Ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Cream Butter and Sugar: In a separate large bowl, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
  4. Add Eggs and Extracts: Beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract and almond extract, until well combined.
  5. Incorporate Dry Ingredients: Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until a dough forms.
  6. Add Almonds and Cherries: Fold in the slivered almonds and dried cherries until evenly distributed throughout the dough.
  7. Shape Dough: Divide the dough in half. On a lightly floured surface, shape each half into a log about 12 inches long and 2 inches wide.
  8. Sprinkle with Sugar Crystals: Sprinkle the coarse sugar crystals evenly over the top of each dough log, pressing lightly to adhere.
  9. Bake: Place the dough logs on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them apart. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until lightly golden brown and firm to the touch.
  10. Cool and Slice: Remove the baked logs from the oven and let them cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F (160°C). Transfer the cooled logs to a cutting board and slice diagonally into 1/2-inch thick slices using a sharp knife.
  11. Second Bake: Place the biscotti slices back on the baking sheet, cut side down. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown. Allow them to cool completely on a wire rack.

Optional Chocolate Dipping:

  1. Melt Chocolate: In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips or baking squares with shortening in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until smooth and melted.
  2. Dip Biscotti: Dip one end of each biscotti into the melted chocolate and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet to set.
  3. Enjoy: Once the chocolate has set, your Cherry Almond Biscotti is ready to be enjoyed! Dip them into your favorite coffee, tea, or hot cocoa for a delightful treat.

Cook Notes and Variations

  • Toasting Almonds: For extra flavor, toast the slivered almonds in a dry skillet over medium heat until lightly golden brown before adding them to the dough.
  • Citrus Zest: Add a pop of citrus flavor by incorporating grated lemon or orange zest into the dough.
  • Different Fruits: Experiment with different dried fruits such as cranberries, apricots, or blueberries for unique flavor combinations.

Keto and Low Carb Versions

For those looking for a keto or low-carb version of Cherry Almond Biscotti, here are some modifications you can make:

  • Almond Flour: Substitute almond flour or a combination of almond flour and coconut flour for all-purpose flour to reduce the carb content.
  • Sugar Substitute: Use keto-friendly sweeteners such as erythritol or monk fruit sweetener in place of sugar.
  • Dried Fruit: Opt for unsweetened dried cherries or skip them altogether to further reduce the carb count.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Can I use other nuts instead of almonds? A: Absolutely! Feel free to substitute almonds with your favorite nuts such as walnuts, pecans, or pistachios for a different flavor profile.

Q: How should I store the biscotti? A: Store the cooled biscotti in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks. They also freeze well for longer storage.

Q: Can I make the biscotti ahead of time? A: Yes, you can bake the biscotti ahead of time and store them in an airtight container. For maximum freshness, dip them in chocolate just before serving.

Q: Can I skip the coarse sugar crystals on top? A: While the coarse sugar crystals add a delightful crunch and sparkle to the biscotti, you can omit them if you prefer a less sweet topping.

Q: Can I use dried cranberries instead of cherries? A: Of course! Dried cranberries make a delicious alternative to dried cherries and add a tartness that complements the almonds beautifully.

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In conclusion, Cherry Almond Biscotti is a delightful treat that combines the crunch of almonds, the sweetness of dried cherries, and the aromatic essence of almond extract in every bite. Whether enjoyed as a morning pick-me-up with your favorite coffee or tea, or as an after-dinner indulgence, these biscotti are sure to please even the most discerning palates. So, why not treat yourself and your loved ones to the joy of homemade biscotti? Whip up a batch today and savor the deliciousness of Cherry Almond Biscotti with every crispy, flavorful bite!

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