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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Dark Chocolate Dipped Citrus Biscotti

As the summer comes to an end and the temperatures start to drop, it's time to say goodbye to all things frappucino, mochacino, iced- this and iced that, and say hello again to big mugs of warmth. Gone are the afternoons of sipping refreshing summer beverages...

Yes, it's sad in some ways. But in some ways, it is a joyous occasion when we can welcome back chilly days and warmer drinks. After all, there's nothing better than enjoying a warm, comforting caffeinated beverage of your choice with some of your closest friends and a yummy biscotti!

Okay, I understand that this may sound like a bribe. Give up summer and you can snuggle up to a warm cup of jo and something sweet. Well, it's not really a bribe. It's just a small reminder of the great things to come. And nothing pairs more perfectly with a steaming mug of coffee than a biscotti. Why?

Well, let's start first by talking about biscotti. What is it? A biscotti is an Italian cookie that is baked twice. It is characterized by having a drier and harder texture and usually does not have any oil or butter in it. They can be made in a variety of flavors, from chocolate to cranberry to hazelnut to coffee flavored.

So, why is the biscotti the perfect accompaniment?

1. Because it is the perfect texture for a dipping cookie. If you are a "cookie dipper," then you know how important it is for your cookie to have enough structure so that when you dip it, it doesn't fall apart into soggy, crumbly bits

2. You need crunch! Whether you are a dipper, or someone who alternates between bites and sips, you know that you need an accompaniment that retains some crunch.

3. Not too sweet. Some accompaniments are far too sweet that the sugariness just coats your mouth and you almost lose the coffee taste that you crave

Well, thankfully, the biscotti meets all of our coffee accompaniment's expectations. It has the ability to be dipped without falling apart, it has great crunch (especially because of the cornmeal component in the ones we will be making) and it has the perfect balance of sweetness.

Now that we've made the case for biscotti as the perfect accompaniment, we need to discuss flavors. As I mentioned before, you can make biscotti in all flavors, just like any other cookie or cake. But in my opinion, there is one particular variety that really outshines the rest, and that is the one we will be making today. Citrus Biscotti.

I love these Citrus Biscotti because, first of all, anything citrus just wins my heart. But besides my love for all things citrus, they are just so simple and clean tasting. You are really able to enjoy the cookie as it is, with a hint of citrus just to make it interesting.

In this recipe, there is also the option to dip these biscotti in dark chocolate. This is not mandatory, but it sure is delicious! I mean, hey, dark chocolate, coffee, citrus.... these are 3 flavors that just excel together!

The best part about biscotti is that they are a naturally dry cookie, and can last up to 3 weeks in an airtight container. So be prepared to make a lot and have them available to entertain your friends!

Dark Chocolate Dipped Citrus Biscotti
Recipe from Giada de Laurentiis

Makes about 36 biscotti

2 cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
3/4 cup fine yellow cornmeal
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 3/4 cup Dark Chocolate, chopped into pieces (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Mix the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt together and then add orange and lemon zests. Beat the eggs and sugar in another bowl until pale yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add flour mixture to the egg mixture and beat just until blended (the dough will be soft and sticky). Let stand for 5 minutes.

Transfer the dough to parchment lined baking sheet. Moisten your hands with water and shape the dough into two 11 by 4-inch logs. Bake until lightly brown, about 35 minutes. Cool the logs for 5 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs into 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices. Bake, cut side down, on parchment until the biscotti are pale and golden, about 25 minutes. Cool the biscotti on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, transfer to a rack and cool completely.

Melt 1 3/4 cups of dark chocolate in the microwave or in a double boiler. Dip biscotti into the melted chocolate, shake off the excess, and place on the baking sheet. Refrigerate until the chocolate is firm, about 35 minutes.

Store in an airtight container up to 4 days, or freeze in resealable plastic bags up to 3 weeks.


  1. nice,very nice!and delicious,too!

  2. Oh,I love these biscotti from Giada, this is one of the best biscotti recipe ever

  3. A very nice biscotti for an afternoon tea!

  4. Your biscotti look beautiful! Love the citrus flavor dipped in chocolate - sounds divine!

  5. Everything is better with dark chocolate!

  6. Looks like an awesome biscotti. Thank you for sharing....

  7. These look great! I like that you half dipped them but I suppose you could dip the entire thing then let the chocolate melt on your fingers. Oh, no! Then you'd have to lick your fingers too.

  8. dark chocolate dipped biscottis, I love it!