Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Holiday Biscotti

Holiday office presents
A couple of holiday office presents for the team.  The mugs are courtesy of Value Village and the Biscotti is homemade by my wonderful husband.

This year's family Christmas presents center around a kitchen theme.  John's contribution was the homemade biscotti.  After 4-5 test batches (which we SO enjoyed) ... he finally landed on a recipe that has already gotten rave reviews from friends!

As we were mailing these to far away places, we needed to come up with a way to keep them from grating on each other and crumbling.  I found some little bags on Amazon, bought some red wrappia and  and picked up kitchen storage containers, with festive red lids, from the Container Store.  We also coupled it up with lovely porcelain mugs (sets of 6) that we found for a great price on Crate and Barrel's website (with their free shipping promotion).
Mugs and biscotti
You've likely seen the placemats and potholders I labored over this fall.  Also added to the package was a flower-sack tea towel in a coordinating color and a little bag of some of our favorite teas.

If you're up for trying some FABULOUS biscotti.  The recipe is as follows.

John’s Biscotti recipe
4 Tablespoon unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon  anisette extract
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
pinch salt
one grated orange zest
3/4 cup silver almonds
1/4 cup dried cranberries
Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 F.  Butter a baking sheet, dust with flour and then remove excess flour.
Use an electric mixer to cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs, one at a time, and then add almond and anisette extract.
Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl the add minced orange zest.  Add flour to the batter a little at a time.
Divide dough into half and shape each into a 2-inch wide log and place on baking sheet.  Bake until the loaves are golden about 30-minutes.  Remove loaves from oven and lower temperature to 250 deg F.
When loaves are cool enough, cut each on a diagonal into 1/2 inch slices using a serrated knife.
Place slices on baking sheet, return to oven for 8 minutes, then carefully turn them over for another 8 to 10 minutes until they dry out.
Will keep in an airtight container ... if you can keep them away from everyone!

The biscotti has also found its way into our neighbors hands ... and recipe requests have come in ... including one from our neighbors who came over last night to wish us a Merry Christmas (even though not everyone in the photo was willing to smile).  It's always fun to have kids in the house during the holidays!
Family of Santa's

I hope that you're having a Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas!

All the best
Lisa

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