Our son has a problem. He’s a coffee addict. Which makes us believe he may also be a caffeine addict, not ideal for a four-year old. We leave the room for just a minute and our coffee mugs are empty when we return. The bag of dark chocolate covered espresso beans on the counter gets smaller and smaller without any of us actually eating them. Hum. He loves coffee flavored yogurt, hard candies, and ice cream. He helps me make the coffee each morning, pouring the water, measuring the coffee grinds, and pushing the buttons to turn on the coffeepot. He always asks for “just a taste” of the creamer and will gladly add Splenda packets to any coffee mug. Maybe he is an old soul. Maybe he is a kid who is going to start going through withdrawal and getting the shakes once the school year starts and his morning access to caffeine is cut off. Either way, we’ve got to address the problem.
In an attempt to curb his addiction and at least regulate his intake, the two of us gladly took the bag of dark chocolate covered espresso beans and used them in these Chocolate Espresso Biscotti. And, when he asked if he could dip his biscotti in my coffee, I handed him a glass of milk instead. I think we have a long road ahead of us, but we are moving in the right direction.
Chocolate Espresso Biscotti
YIELD: approximately two dozen
2 ½ cups flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 ½ teaspoons double-acting baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup 100% dark cocoa powder
1 ½ tablespoons instant espresso powder
2 eggs and 2 egg whites
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup dark chocolate covered espresso beans
¼ cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place the rack in the middle of the oven.
2. In a large flat-bottomed bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cocoa powder, and espresso powder.
3. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg whites (save the yolks to top the logs before baking), and vanilla extract.
4. With a rubber spatula, stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until the dough just starts to come together. Dust your hands with flour and knead the dough in the bowl until all the ingredients are incorporated and the dough is tacky.
5. Add the espresso beans and chocolate chips and knead the dough until incorporated, about 10 – 20 times.
6. Separate the dough in half. Form two logs, approximately 3 inches wide and 1 inch high on a parchment lined baking sheet. Leave several inches between the logs. The dough will spread as it bakes.
7. Whisk together the two remaining egg yolks. Brush the top of the eggs with the egg wash.
8. Mix equal parts espresso powder and sugar in a small bowl. With your fingers spread the mixture on top of the logs.
9. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until the tops begin to crack or split. Transfer logs to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
10. Transfer biscotti logs to a cutting board. Slice the biscotti on a diagonal and place cut side down on the same parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for an additional 20 minutes, turning the biscotti once halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
What to do with the ends #18: Give the ends to a teething baby.