We are lucky enough to have chestnut trees in the back yard. And they have been producing large buckets of beautiful chestnuts! I always find this type of nut rather bitter, so I decided to take on a challenge and find ways to cook and bake with them.
My first challenge: The Chestnut Biscotti courtesy of Cooking Light!
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons stick butter, softened
- 1 large egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Dash of salt
- 1/2 cup finely chopped cooked shelled chestnuts (about 1/2 pound in shells)
- Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350°.
Combine sugar and margarine in a large bowl; beat at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended. Add egg and vanilla; beat well. Combine flour, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt; gradually add to sugar mixture, beating until well-blended. Add chestnuts; beat well.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 7 times. Shape dough into a 12-inch-long roll. Place roll on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; flatten to a 1-inch thickness.
Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Remove roll from baking sheet; let cool 10 minutes on a wire rack.
Cut roll diagonally into 16 (1/2-inch) slices. Place slices, cut sides down, on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 5 minutes. Turn cookies over; bake an additional 5 minutes (cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool). Remove from baking sheet; let cool completely on wire rack.
Note: Store the biscotti in an airtight container.
I must say the biscotti is excellent, but I HIGHLY advise you to make sure the chestnuts are minced, not just finely chopped. I did the finely chopped route, and there were a few bites of chestnut that were just too hard! Who wants that in their biscotti?
But the overall, is thumbs up on this recipe. It carries great flavors of nutmeg and vanilla and I am willing to bet that if you went the extra mile and dipped the biscotti in chocolate, that it would make it kicked up one more notch.