Cranberry & Pistachio Biscotti with Chilli Hot Chocolate

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When my dear friends gifted me Nigella Lawson’s Italian cookbook ‘Nigellissma’, I knew it then that they really loved me. I love Nigella, and her recipes, and contrary to popular belief her recipes are not all about butter and cream. Predictably, I ended up spending a good part of the day flipping through it and salivating about what to cook next.

I spotted the recipe for Cranberry Biscotti and knew that I had to try them. I love a good biscotti, and, whenever I go to my favourite Italian Deli, I always order it with my coffee and get some to go as well. And then that week’s morning or afternoon coffee is always accompanied by a biscotti. I like the crunchy, dry texture of the biscotti and the slight note of sweetness. The Italians dip their’s into sweet dessert wine, but, I like it with coffee or hot chocolate, you could do either.

Chilli Chocolate is my new favourite flavour of the year after salted caramel last year. I stumbled upon this recipe for a Chilli Hot Chocolate which I absolutely loved, and am sharing that here as well. It’s super simple and delicious, and definitely an adult taste.

Chilli Hot Chocolate

  • Servings: 1 steaming mug
  • Time: 20mins
  • Difficulty: “easy”
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk (skim or whole based on your preference)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 fresh red chilli sliced into two halves
  • 40gm dark semisweet chocolate or 2tbsp dark drinking chocolate powder

Recipe:

  1. Gently heat milk, chilli, and cinnamon in saucepan over low heat till it starts bubbling on sides but not boiling.
  2. Remove from heat and strain the milk discarding the cinnamon and chilli.
  3. Put it back on low flame and add the dark chocolate and stir it through until it melts and mixes.
  4. Pour it in mug. Add a dollop of whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon sugar if you feel like indulging and enjoy!

Cranberry & Pistachio Biscotti

  • Servings: 12-15 Biscotti
  • Time: 2hrs
  • Difficulty: “moderate”
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 75gm caster sugar
  • 2 tsp finely grated orange zest
  • 125gm plain flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Fresh nutmeg
  • 75gm pistachios
  • 50gm dried cranberries

Recipe:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Whisk the egg and sugar until pale and leaves ribbon trail when you lift the beater. Be careful to not beat too much else it will become stiff like a meringue. Add the orange zest and slowly fold in the flour, baking powder, and a good grating of nutmeg.
  3. Fold in the whole pistachios and dried cranberries. Flour your work surface well and dust some on your hands too as the dough will be quiet sticky.
  4. Form the dough into a flattish, oval half moon shape log approx 25x5cm tapering the ends slightly. The shape will be similar to ciabatta loaf with a flattish bottom and curved top.
  5. Lay the dough onto a piece of baking parchment paper on a baking sheet and cook for 25-30mins, until the log is pale brown in colour. It might help to rotate the baking sheet halfway through to distribute the heat evenly.
  6. Transfer to a wire rack and let it cool for 5mins until it hardens slightly. Using a bread knife or a serrated edged knife, cut the baked loaf into 1cm thick pieces.
  7. Put these back onto the parchment paper baking tray and bake for another 10 minutes, then turn the biscotti over and cook for final 5 minutes more. The colour should be golden brown.
  8. Let the biscotti cool on wire rack completely before storing them in an airtight jar. They stay fresh for 3-4 weeks but mine never lasted that long.

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