RECIPESDECEMBER 13, 2011

holiday biscotti

I have long been a fan of homemade holiday gifts, and it doesn’t get much better than fresh baked biscotti. In seasons past, I have baked up large batches of these Italian treats to accompany a great blend of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate. I set out to create a ‘healthier’ version for my naturally sweet, gluten-free, and vegan holiday sweets baking class.

I liked the idea of using almond flour in my recipe, so I visited Elana’s Pantry to learn from the queen of gluten-free baking with almond flour. I found THIS recipe for lemon almond biscotti and gave it a whirl – they were great!

My recipe below doesn’t deviate from Elana’s formula too much. I have tried to reduce my reliance on agave in recipes, so I chose to use coconut palm sugar. This is a great low glycemic sweetener that is less refined than the classic white stuff that is available at Whole Foods or on Amazon. You can substitute palm sugar or sucanat with great results.

This version also has a festive, holiday color palette courtesy of the currants and pistachios. The anise lends just the right amount of spice, and reminds me of another of my favorite holiday cookies from childhood.

Anyone on your holiday gift list would be lucky to receive these addictive treats. And you don’t even have to mention they are full of antioxidants, protein, and fiber.

Almond Biscotti with Currants

Ingredients:

2 ½ cups almond flour
½ cup coconut palm sugar
2 tablespoons arrowroot
¾ teaspoon anise seed
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup pistachio
1/4 cup non-dairy milk (almond, coconut, rice, etc)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup currants
zest from 1 orange

Procedure:

Add almond flour, sugar, arrowroot, anise, salt and baking soda to food processor; pulse to combine. Add pistachios, pulse.

Pulse in milk and vanilla until dough forms a ball.

Transfer dough to a medium bowl; stir in currants and orange zest.

Form dough into 2 logs on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake at 350° for 25 minutes, then remove from oven and cool for 1 hour. Cut the logs into ½ inch slices on the diagonal with a sharp knife.

Spread slices out on a baking sheet and bake at 300° for 20-25 minutes

Remove from oven and let cool for 20-25 minutes.

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