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Chocolate, Cherry, and Hazelnut Biscotti

Yield 2 dozen (serving size: 1 biscotto)
Package a dozen of these cookies in decorative plastic bags or cellophane from a craft store, and present with high-quality coffee beans. Make sure to use a heavy-duty stand mixer for this recipe's very stiff dough.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts
  • 1/2 cup port or other sweet red wine
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 4.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Nutrition Information

  • calories 94
  • caloriesfromfat 34 %
  • fat 3.5 g
  • satfat 1 g
  • monofat 1.3 g
  • polyfat 0.3 g
  • protein 1.9 g
  • carbohydrate 14.2 g
  • fiber 1.3 g
  • cholesterol 17 mg
  • iron 0.9 mg
  • sodium 61 mg
  • calcium 29 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.

  2. Place hazelnuts on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes, stirring once. Turn nuts out onto a towel. Roll up towel; rub off skins. Chop nuts.

  3. Pour wine in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 minute. Add cherries, and let stand for 30 minutes. Drain well.

  4. Place sugar and chocolate in a food processor; process until chocolate is finely ground.

  5. Place vanilla, egg, and egg yolk in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended (about 1 minute). Add sugar mixture; beat 1 minute.

  6. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Combine flour and remaining ingredients, and stir with a whisk. Gradually add flour mixture to egg mixture, beating until blended. Add hazelnuts and cherries; beat just until blended. (The dough will be very stiff.) Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead lightly several times. Divide dough in half; shape each portion into an 8-inch-long roll. Place rolls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper; pat each roll to a 1-inch thickness. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and cool on a baking sheet for 10 minutes.

  7. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.

  8. Cut each roll diagonally into 12 slices. Place, cut sides down, on baking sheet. Bake at 325° for 10 minutes. Turn cookies over; bake an additional 10 minutes (cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool). Cool completely on wire rack.