Peppermint Biscotti and Chocolate Chip Biscotti for Your Holiday Trays

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas–and it’s getting cold too!  I don’t mind baking when it warms my house and heart getting ready for holiday parties.  I usually deliver several trays to friends, neighbors and family over the next few weeks.  I especially enjoy having several types of cookies to arrange on these trays, hoping to hit the spot with an old recipe or a new one!  The peppermint  biscotti is a new one for me–it just jumped out at me saying “Happy Holidays!”  And then I read the recipe and figured I could use the same base to make chocolate chip biscotti–just in case someone didn’t care for peppermint.  It was a winner in my book.

If you don’t know about biscotti, it is a traditional Italian cookie often called “twice baked” because you bake the dough the first time in a log, slice it across (or on an angle), then bake them again until they are quite crispy.  Usually they are dipped partly into chocolate for just a little more flavor. They are served with tea or coffee and used for dunking.  I really enjoy having them on hand for afternoon tea.  That little bit of crunch and sweetness really bolsters my afternoons.

This is a fun, gluten-free new addition to my cookie recipes and I’m sure I’ll be baking them for years to come.  Give them a try!  Happy Holidays!

Biscotti–Peppermint or Chocolate Chip
 
Ingredients
Biscotti base
  • ¾ cups softened butter
  • ¾ cups sugar
  • 3 Large eggs
  • 3¼ cups Baking Free gluten-free All Purpose Flour (403 g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Peppermint half
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract (if making both flavors--double if only making peppermint)
  • ½ cup crushed peppermint sticks or candies (if making both flavors--double if only making peppermint)
Chocolate Chip half
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (if making both flavors--double if only making chocolate chip)
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips (if making both flavors--double if only making chocolate chip)
Decoration
  • 6 cubes meltable chocolate like for almond bark
  • ½ cup additional crushed peppermint candies
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
Instructions
Biscotti base
  1. In a large bowl for a strand mixer cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in separate bowl. Gradually add to the creamed mixture, beating until well blended. The dough will be stiff.
  2. Scrape the bowl sides and divide the dough into two equal parts in separate bowls. Add candy and appropriate flavorings to each bowl--peppermint flavoring and candy to one; vanilla and chocolate chips to the other. Place each half on an ungreased baking sheet. Shape each into a log 12 X 2.5-inch rectangle. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown..
  3. Cool on baking rack for 15 minutes. Carefully transfer each log to cutting board and slice into ½-inch slices. Place one cut side down on ungreased baking sheet and bake for an additional 12-15 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Decoration
  1. Melt chocolate for decorating according to instructions on package. Dip each slice of biscotti in chocolate and sprinkle with crushed candy or chopped nuts. Place on wax paper lined tray. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight container. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

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