Friday, October 18, 2013

Pumpkin Biscotti

It seems like every fall, the world explodes with pumpkin: pumpkin bread, cookies, muffins, anything you can think of! I’ll be honest; I’m not the biggest fan of pumpkin. Some people give me a hard time about that: how can I not like pumpkin pie? I don’t dislike pumpkin pie (but my mom does!) but I’d choose almost any other pie if given the choice.

I also find pumpkin really hard to work with. The texture is weird and anything that you put it in is sticky. I like the spices that are paired with pumpkin, so that is what usually pushes me over the edge when deciding to make something with pumpkin. I came across these biscotti and I was fascinated. Would this be the recipe that pushed pumpkin over the sticky threshold? Biscotti are usually so crisp that sticky is last thing I would think about.

Well, the dough for these certainly starts sticky! I shaped the dough with the 2-1/4 cups flour, but it was super hard to shape. I think I should have added another ½ cup of flour or so to help. I stuck the dough in the oven and hoped for the best. It baked just fine. When I sliced the biscotti, there was one place where the biscotti was a little under baked, but that seemed to work out when you baked the cookies the second time. You can taste the pumpkin in these but it isn’t too strong, which is just fine by me.

Pumpkin Biscotti
2-1/4 cups flour (or more)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cups hazelnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside. In a large mixer bowl, beat the pumpkin puree and brown sugar until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla.

With the mixer running on low, gradually add the flour mixture. Mix until the dough is thick (you may need to add more flour). By hand, stir in the hazelnuts.

As the dough is sticky, flour your work surface. On the floured work surface, shape the dough into a 12 x 4 inch log. Place on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until firm. The log will be soft but should be baked through. Allow to cool completely, about an hour, before continuing.

Place the cookie log on a cutting board and slice into ½ inch slices. Place the slices, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until crisp. Cool completely before serving.

Recipe from Cooking and Beer

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