It is that time of year again, National Chocolate Week. The one week of the year where you can legitimately eat chocolate for breakfast, lunch and dinner without anyone raising an eyebrow.
Well, the one week of the year that isn’t in December, because we all know that chocolate is a main food group during the festive season.
I may be a little distracted during this post as I am writing it in my bedroom and one of the cats is currently running around like a crazy thing and she keeps jumping up on top of the wicker laundry basket and chasing her tail, which makes me slightly anxious because 1) it isn’t very big and I think she is going to fall off it (but to be fair, she doesn’t have far to fall so it isn’t a major concern) and 2) it is a bit old and even though she only weighs 4kg it creaks like nobody’s business and I am concerned it is going to collapse or split or something. Oh, and 3) she might get her claws caught in it. I keep telling her to stop but she just burbles at me and carries on, usually followed by jumping off and running full pelt down the stairs, doing an impressive u-turn on the middle landing (three storey house) and running full pelt back up them. Although it has all gone quiet now so I think she may have it out of her system!
Where were we? Ah, yes, chocolate week. Which means that this week’s recipe had to be chocolate based (also the most popular recipes on this blog tend to be chocolate based).
These biscotti were on the list for later in the month, but obviously I had to bump them up to this week. It only made sense.
I based them on the first biscotti recipe I ever put on this little space of mine, (there is only one other, so it isn’t as if there are masses to choose from), just adding some cocoa powder into the mix and taking out a couple of the other flavours.
I love the contrast of the green pistachios against the dark brown of the biscuit. It feels very autumnal. Side note – I had my first pumpkin spice latte last week. Not as good as the gingerbread one, in my opinion. I felt it needed more cinnamon and cloves, or spices in general. Disappointed. However I feel I need to give this homemade version a go.
See, I told you I was going to get distracted.
Right, this biscotti, what else can I say about it? The biscuit part isn’t very sweet, which I like, and the discovery of little chocolate chips is delightful, especially as they almost hide in the biscuit due to them being so similar in colour. You can eat them just as they are (which I may have done when transferring them from the tray to the container. Two just kind of disappeared), but the flavours really come to life when you dunk them in something, whether that be hot milk, coffee or, as it is chocolate week, hot chocolate.
And now, because my mind is wandering all over the place, I am thinking of a Christmas version – cranberry and orange? What do you think?
Chocolate & Pistachio Biscotti
- 60g sweet rice flour (also known as glutinous rice flour), see notes below
- 40g dark cocoa powder
- 50g ground pistachios, see notes below
- 50g fine cornmeal (polenta)
- 25g corn flour
- 1 tbsp arrowroot
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 40g pistachios
- 40g dark chocolate chunks
- 110ml clear honey
- 6 tbsp hot water
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 celsius / 160 fan / 350 fahrenheit. Line a small baking tray with non-stick paper.
- In a small bowl mix together the honey and hot water and set aside.
- Mix together the rice flour, ground pistachios, cornmeal, corn flour, arrowroot, bicarbonate of soda and salt in a bowl.
- Add the pistachios and chocolate chunks. Stir until distributed as evenly as possible.
- Add the honey and water mixture to the dry ingredients and work with your hands to bring it together into a soft dough.
- Form into a log shape, approximately 25cm (10 inches) long by 5cm (2 inches) wide on the baking tray.
- Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until darker in colour and firm to the touch.
- Leave to cool for 1 hour.
- Using a serrated knife, carefully cut the log on a diagonal angle into 1cm thick pieces. Arrange them on the baking sheet and return to the oven for 10 minutes. Then turn over and bake for another 10 minutes until darker in colour and firm to the touch.
- Allow to cool completely.
- Store in an air-tight container.
- If you can’t get hold of sweet rice flour you can use regular rice flour and add 1 teaspoon of psyllium husk powder to provide the sticky factor. However you will end up with softer and slightly crumblier biscotti.
- I whizzed up some pistachios in a small blender to make ground pistachios. If this isn’t possible for you, ground almonds will work just as well.
© The Pink Rose Bakery 2015