Saturday, December 22, 2012

Pecan Pie Biscotti

I love being able to take twists on old favourites or ingredient combinations and turn them into something else entirely. My mom loves her pecan pies, but not all the sugar, fat and other stuff that goes into them - especially around the holidays. Seriously, when you buy (and use up) 6 lbs of butter, 2 cups of whipping cream, 4 cups of half and half and more eggs, sugar, bread, chocolate and cheese than I can count in the course of twenty days, the last thing you need is more excess! By the way, those amounts don't count the rest of the gluttony that entails my stepdad's birthday party on New Years' Day - cheese stuffed, breaded chicken, risotto and some array of vegetables, appetizers and sides plus lemon meringue pie. Yeah. See what I mean about not needing anything more?

That said, we still had holiday parties to schlep to and gift boxes to make, and biscotti is one of those simple, variable and easy to store treats that are perfect on the cookie tray. Since I knew there would be "biscotti butts" that my mom would undoubtedly go for, I figured I might as well make something she'd actually love (as a usually non-biscotti person). What could be better than encapsulating all the decadence of that classic pecan pie in a bite? 

Pecan Pie BiscottiI decided to use both chopped and ground toasted pecans for a world of flavour and a bit of buttery "crunch", helped along by a scattering of toffee bits, dark, rich coconut sugar and a hint of nutmeg. Whole wheat flour helped things along in the wholesome department and the whole thing was made oh-so-rich tasting with a touch of real, salted butter. Need I say more? Didn't think so. Dunk this in your coffee and sit back... you can hit the gym tomorrow.

Pecan Pie Biscotti
Makes 20
1 cup flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tbsp ground pecans
¼ tsp nutmeg
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp baking powder
½ cup coconut sugar
¼ cup melted, salted butter
½ cup whole milk
1 tsp pure vanilla 
1 tsp maple extract
½ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup toffee bits
  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment or silicone.
  2. Mix the flours, ground pecans, nutmeg, salt, baking powder and sugar in a large bowl.
  3. Stir in the melted butter, milk, vanilla and maple extract, then fold in the pecans and toffee bits.
  4. Divide the dough in half, shape each half into a flattened log and place on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. Bake 30 minutes.
  6. Reduce the oven to 325F.
  7. Cool biscotti 15 minutes, then slice on the diagonal into 20 pieces.
  8. Place biscotti, cut side down, on the sheets and bake 10 minutes, then flip and bake 10 minutes more. 
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 125.6
Total Fat: 6.2 g
Cholesterol: 8.7 mg
Sodium: 42.0 mg
Total Carbs: 16.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.2 g
Protein: 2.2 g