Saturday, February 6, 2010

I'm in Orangey Almond Biscotti Bliss

Growing up, my mom (a very developed chef in her own kitchen) used to test out new recipes all the time. There was throw-up chicken (dubbed thusly because of its appearance) which is a creamy tomatoey draped out of this world delicious chicken, Grandma's chili in the winter, béchamel- kissed asparagus in early spring, crisp broccoli summer salad, I could go on and on... but one dish that didn't particularly succeed was "Orange-peel soup."  The four of us kids still have nightmares about the saccharine orange goop that even now I am having trouble describing without gagging slightly. Warm. Orange-peel. Soup. Never...

Therefore, when I saw the orange liquer in a beautiful box of baking supplies from Nick's parents this Christmas, I was worried that it would be a challenge to use it subtly without over-emphasizing the Orange-ness in this dish. Despite Nick's grumbles that I'm somehow conspiring to make him fat, I cannot tell you how overjoyed I was to find a recipe of Deb's this week, in which I could use my new orange liquer! I love a great challenge, especially in the kitchen :-)

While Nick went off to get super-bowl supplies, I hurried to mix and pop these in the oven, especially after I noticed that these suckers are thrice-baked. This was a beginner friendly two-bowl recipe that took about 15 minutes to whip together. After the first 30 minutes of baking, I had these lovelies:
(If there is one thing I have learned it is to read the full baking instructions entirely before getting started. Many a dish had to fail before it became engrained in my head to do just that.) Look at those toasted almonds; the smell at the very first step was just heavenly! Two leftover bags of sliced almonds were definitely part of the inspiration to conquer this dish. After cooling for 25, then slicing and baking for 12 more minutes, I had these:
I barely had these out of the oven before popping a few crumbles into my greedy bouth. The orange is very subtle but it is a an elegant touch to what could be an otherwise standard-fare almond flavor (which I usually adore on its own). The biscotti were then supposed to be flipped and baked for another 8 minutes but I decided they were crisp enough and did not need a third baking. Having enjoyed them hours later, after they were contained in an airtight jar, I do think they could have benefitted from just a little more firmness because as-is they are just slightly too soft and disintegrated too quickly in my coffee. With coffee ice cream however, it was a perfect combination and such a nice way to end the day, despite NO snow. What gives weatherman?

I would make this recipe again and again and again. Such a delicious way to enjoy these flavors. Deb flattened her biscotti out more so they were longer, which I would probably do next time but overall this was a great sweet treat for our weekend, snow or not.

1 comment:

  1. The dreaded orange peel soup recipe seems to be mia, or I would defy you to recreate it and not find it newly delicious with your now grown up palate. I agree baby in headphones best part of super bowl. My vote on the moth-eaten sweater look TRASHY but somehow works. Biscotti and calamari both look YUM!