Goodbye 2016, and hello 2017! I believe that 2016 was definitely a year for the record books, which I say with both positive and negative connotations. Still, we have to find the good among the bad. A few weeks ago, I found the basis for this recipe scribbled on a random piece of paper tucked inside of one of my many cookbooks. That was something pretty good that happened to me in 2016, right? Ha!
Admittedly, while I am a conscientious eater roughly 95% of of the time, I fell into that horrible holiday trap of eating lots of processed foods and refined sugars over the months of November and December; I blamed it on the stresses of the world and said, "It's Christmas! It's okay! Three* chocolate chip cookies never killed anyone!"
There is nothing wrong with a treat every so often in combination with a balanced diet, I firmly believe. However, if we can make a treat a bit more nutrient-dense with easy - to - identify ingredients, even better!
Fact: This was the first time I've ever baked with almond flour; I was a bit apprehensive upon finding this recipe, not sure if my adaptations would yield something edible. I'm used to using traditional flours. As it turns out, I had little to fear! Though it's a little less crisp than a traditional flour-based biscotti, it's still thick and delicious. I love almonds, so between the almond flour base and the addition of chopped slivered almonds, I was in heaven as I crafted this recipe.
I tried Nutiva Organic Hazelnut Spread with dark cocoa for the first time as well; I thought a little drizzle would be a lovely accompaniment. With less sugar than its obvious competitor and more wholesome ingredients, it allows for a bit of decadence without going overboard. It complements the almonds and the cranberries incredibly well!
This recipe takes a bit of time from start to finish, as there are many stages of baking and dressing these babies up. It's absolutely worth it, though! Perhaps save this recipe as a good baking project for an upcoming snowy or rainy day!
Cheers to 2017! Be sure to treat yourself and others right. This biscotti is not a bad way to start. ;-)
* - I think I might have had six one night. I'm not made of stone. Ha!
Almond Cranberry Biscotti
- 2 cups almond flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries (See Notes)
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot flour (See Notes)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons Nutiva Organic Hazelnut Spread in Dark Cocoa, slightly melted
- Many dried cranberries can be loaded with extra sugars and oils. I highly recommend searching for ones that are naturally sweetened (such as with apple juice like this one instead of sugar or corn syrup). It's worth reading the ingredients!
- Arrowroot flour is used as a slight thickening agent in this biscotti batter. However, cornstarch can be substituted, in an equal amount (1 tablespoon), for arrowroot flour should you not have arrowroot flour on hand and / or you have no dietary aversions to corn startch.
1.) Preheat oven to 350°F. Fit a piece of parchment paper to a large baking sheet and set aside. Or, if you are lucky enough to have a biscotti pan (I wish I did!), prep your biscotti pan.
2.) In a large mixing bowl, add eggs and honey. Using a hand mixer, mix on low for 30 seconds until combined. Mixture should be frothy.
3.) Add almond flour, arrowroot flour (or cornstarch), salt, and baking soda to the egg mixture; stir with a wooden spoon (or a large spoon) until a dough forms. Add cranberries and almonds and stir (or use your hands, as I did!) to combine.
4.) Place dough on the prepared baking sheet. Create a long rectangle, roughly 12" in length and 4" - 6" in width. (The average biscotti pan is 12.5" x 6", for reference.) If using a biscotti pan, fill completely with dough.
5.) Bake for 20 minutes or until a light golden color. Remove biscotti from oven and allow to cool for at least one hour; turn off oven while biscotti cools. Once cooled, cut the biscotti into 1" thick slices; lay slices flat on the previously-used baking sheet baking sheet and parchment paper; no need to be wasteful! (If using a biscotti pan, transfer slices to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet for their second baking.)
6.) Bring oven temperature back up to 350°F. Place sliced biscotti back in the oven and bake for an additional 20 minutes to crisp slices. Remove from oven to cool for at least another hour.
7.) Melt hazelnut spread in a small saucepan over low heat or in the microwave for approximately 20 seconds or until spread reaches a drizzleable consistency. (Note: Dibs on crafting the word drizzleable.) Place biscotti slices back into their original loaf orientation (this can be approximate!). Drizzle spread on top of slices and allow to set; if you want the spread to harden, place biscotti in the fridge to cool for at least 30 minutes.