These biscotti are amazing. Crisp and crunchy and great for dipping in tea or coffee, but not at all like the kind of biscotti that are impossible to eat unless softened by liquid. All my self-control evaporates when there is a batch of these in the house. This batch lasted less than 24 hours. Luckily they are high in fibre, low in fat (and actually contain healthful monounsaturated fats) and less sugar than your average bikkie (once again I have adapted the recipe to contain less sugar than the original). Still, as with also cakes, bikkies and muffins, it’s best to eat them sparingly, especially if you are struggling to maintain a healthy weight. My advice is to make them when you are going to have visitors because calories consumed in the company of others don’t count. Okay that’s a lie, but at least if you have visitors you won’t scoff the whole batch yourself. Beware that there are a couple of resting times in the recipe and you are best to start them the day before you want to eat them.
Coconut and Cashew Biscotti
Recipe adapted from Sally’s terrific biscotti recipe from the wonderful Mix and Bake by Belinda Jeffery (I do find the recipes in this book a tad sweet for my tastes, but it’s easy enough to reduce the sugar and other than that the recipes work perfectly every time).
125g wholemeal flour
100g high-fibre white flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
100g roasted unsalted cashews, coarsely chopped (if you have raw cashews you can stick them under the grill or in the oven until they are a little brown and more fragrant. You could also use walnuts, pecans or macadamias or omit nuts altogether)
35g shredded coconut
1 egg white
110g caster sugar (whatever you do don’t substitute with brown sugar as this will make the biscotti soggy upon storage)
½ cup light olive oil
2 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a medium sized bowel then add the coconut and nuts and mix thoroughly.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the egg, egg white and sugar. Pour in the oil and vanilla extract and whisk again.
- Tip the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir together. Cover bowl with plastic film and refrigerate for 6 hours to overnight.
- Divide dough into two and shape into two logs about 20cm long. Place on tray, leaving a gap between them to allow for spread while cooking.
- Bake for around 35 minutes until the logs are golden brown. Remove from oven and let them cool (still on tray) for 45mins to an hour (you want them slightly warm, but not hot for the next part).
- While waiting, have fun explaining to your kids/siblings/parents/significant other/yourself why the bikkies aren’t ready to eat yet, even though something smells fantastic. Also line another tray (or two if they are small) with baking paper.
- Once logs have firmed up, cut them into 1cm thick slices with a very sharp knife. I must admit, I struggle to get mine as thin as 1cm. They are probably closer to 2cm, but they’re still delicious. If you can’t get them as thin as 1 cm just bear in mind that you need to make sure they are cooked long enough to be dry and crisp all the way through.
- Lay the slices flat on the baking trays and return them to the oven for 20 to 30 minutes or until they are crisp and golden brown. I sometimes turn them over after about 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from oven. I often remove them bit by bit as my oven tends to cook the ones around the edges quicker. Leave to cool completely (munch on any broken bits while they are hot!). About a third of the batch never gets to cool down completely at my house. The smell is just too enticing.
- When completely cool, store in airtight containers. The flavour does get better with age, so try and save some for the next day.