28 November 2007

la dolce vita...

sweet!! there is a contest going on over at shelley's blog...just in time for the baking of the season...i have been a big fan of mario batali & his magnificent pastry chef gina depalma for some years now. her fig walnut biscotti from the babbo cookbook is one of my all time favorite variations on these italian cookies. in honor of ms. depalma's new book, dolce italiano, shelley & 4 other bloggers (see list below) are presenting recipes from the book, monday through friday, this week & next. all you must do to enter the contest is stop by one of these lovely blogs & leave a comment on the day of the featured recipe. the prize...a copy of ms. depalma's dolce italiano!! how much easier could this be?!? hey, even if you don't win, you still get a first-hand look at some awesome recipes...
monday...ms adventures in italy (please check her monday post!)
tuesday...lucullian delights (& check her tuesday post!)
wednesday...bleeding espresso (go here today!!)
thursday...at home in rome (the contest hostess, shelley)
italian sweets on wednesday also means what's cooking wednesday!this week's recipe has become an old stand-by & i have experimented with many variations on its flavors. i hope you enjoy it as much as we do. so brew yourself a cup of espresso or pour a glass of vin santo & enjoy...
2 c. + 2 T. flour (for chocolate biscotti, substitute 4 T. cocoa powder for 4 T. of flour)
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
whisk all together in a bowl & set aside
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. unsalted butter
cream together until well blended & then add:
2 large eggs, one at a time. then add:
2 T. grand marnier
grated peel from 2 oranges or tangerines
blend well & then add flour mixture...finally, stir in:
1 c. nuts (walnuts-our favorite, almonds, or pecans)
1 c. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (chopped or chips work)
flavor variations we have enjoyed...
chocolate (see flour note above to adjust)
lemon (substitute grated peel from 2-3 lemons & eliminate grand marnier, use almonds)
cranberry (use orange flavorings & add 1/2 to 1 c. cranberries)
raspberry (substitute raspberry liquor for grand marnier, may keep or eliminate grated peel as preferred, & use raspberry filled chocolate chips if you are lucky enough to find them...we had them locally last holiday season)
you can, of course eliminate any flavoring, nuts (my children's request), or chocolate (why???) as you prefer...mix & match...be creative!
gather well-mixed dough & divide in half. refrigerate for 2 hours or until it handles well. flour hands & work surface well then shape each half into logs...15 inches by 2 inches, & place them on a prepared baking sheet (lined with parchment). bake about 30 minutes at 350...until logs are golden brown. transfer logs on parchment to cooling rack & cool for 30 minutes, also reduce oven temp to 300.
using a serrated knife, cut cooled logs on the diagonal into 1/2 inch slices...place them upright with a bit of space between on baking sheet. bake approximately 30 minutes at 300, then cool on rack. store in airtight container.
buon appetito!!

30 days of thanks...for sweet things found on wonderful blogs!!


sognatrice said...

Yum! Love the photo :)

And thanks for the shout out!

Sara, Ms Adventures in Italy said...

Thanks for helping us spread the word about the contest! I love the orange rind placement.

Cre8Tiva said...

i love to make biscotti...thanks for the recipes...and the links...blessings, rebecca

Wicked H said...


somepinkflowers said...

just had to jump in here
and say
how much i like
your new blog design.
so very nicely done!
and i love the photos of italy
along the ride side.

i have been all over
the cinque terre,
all over vernazza,
and had to smile
when i saw that shot!

when last i was there,
looking down at that view,
i had sampled too much limoncello.


ooops, not good when hiking
but this man along the hillside
trail was selling samples...

was afraid
i might not make it down
to the cathedral,
but, you can see i did...

was wondering, have you a recipe
for making limoncello?

Claudia said...

I recommand you with Vin Santo!! They are gorgeous...
Mind, not too much Vin Santo!;-)