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Kryten’s Grandmother’s Biscotti — Why Now?
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Kryten’s Grandmother’s Biscotti

Double Chocolate Walnut Biscotti

These crunchy hard cookies are used all over Italy and are perfect for dunking in coffee, tea, or hot chocolate! BTW, biscotti means “twice cooked” – the secret of their crunchy goodness! 😀


2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup unsweetened pure cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
6 tbsp. (¾ stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup walnuts, chopped
¾ cup semisweet chocolate chips

(NOTE: Here & Europe, 1 cup = 240 milliliters).


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a large baking sheet.

2. In a bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.

3. In another bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat until well combined. Stir in flour mixture to form a stiff dough. Stir in walnuts and chocolate chips.

4. On prepared baking sheet, and with floured hands, form dough into two slightly flattened logs, each 12 inches long and 2 inches wide.

5. Bake logs 35 minutes, or until slightly firm to the touch. Cool on baking sheet 15 minutes.

6. Transfer logs to a cutting board. Cut logs diagonally into ¾ inch slices.

7. Arrange biscotti, cut sides down, on baking sheet and bake until crisp, about 10 minutes.

Cool biscotti on a rack.

Makes about 30 biscotti. They will keep in air-tight containers for a week.


1 hipparchia { 06.05.08 at 9:28 pm }

oh gee thanks. now they’re in comments and on the front page. my twice-drooled-on keyboard HATES you both.

i’m looking forward to making some of these this weekend.

2 Bryan { 06.05.08 at 9:58 pm }

My Mother can’t have chocolate, and I can’t safely make them in my kitchen, so I know how you feel.

3 Kryten42 { 06.05.08 at 11:00 pm }

Awwww… sorry hipparchia! 🙁 OK… no more recipe’s then… *sigh*

Bryan: Hmmm. Maybe LadyMin can bake a batch and send you some! 😀 (If she can do it before scoffing the lot!) LOL I’ll ask… 🙂

Oh… and h… :b LOL 😉
*sigh* As I said in my comment on this, I can’t eat them either, or a lot of other things I *really* liked my Gran made!

She did some great Maltese recipes that I still have, like: Ross il-forn (baked rice), Pastizzi (kind of a small *pie* with either ricotta/spinach or meat filling), Timpana (baked macaroni), Aljotta (fish soup), Pudina (bread pudding) and more! 🙂


4 LadyMin { 06.05.08 at 11:13 pm }

Yummy… biscotti. My grandmother makes them for me. I’ve never tried to make them myself. I do a really good Chicken Vesuvio though. Not too sure how well it would survive shipping!

5 hipparchia { 06.05.08 at 11:48 pm }

no no no! don’t stop with the recipes! please!

the problem is only that i’m going to have to go to the grocery store first. which will have to wait till the weekend. meanwhile, every time i visit this blog between now and saturday-ish, there it’ll be double chocolate…

6 Bryan { 06.05.08 at 11:58 pm }

Recipes are always welcome as, the last I heard, we all have to eat.

7 Kryten42 { 06.06.08 at 12:34 am }

No worries… I was teasing. 😉

more coming! On the weekend! LOL (which for me, starts tomorrow. 3 Days! *Queens Birthday* Monday) 😉

Cheers all! 😀

8 cookie jill { 06.06.08 at 7:19 pm }

Biscotti….my fave. I know the folks who run Santa Barbara Biscotti. Good…but nothing is as good as home baked, in my humble crumbly opinion.

9 Bryan { 06.06.08 at 7:36 pm }

The thing is, Jill, the commercial places have a tendency to use cheaper bulk ingredients, which aren’t that bad for a single substitution, but the cumulative effect is a lesser product.

The other problem is that some things just don’t scale [as we say in computers]. Some recipes just don’t work when you double everything. You would think that is should be that easy, but it isn’t. And it works the other way, too, as my Mother has recipes from family reunions, but when you cut them down to reasonable levels so you don’t fill your freezer with leftovers, they just don’t taste right.

Of course, that’s the key to a successful food business – finding the right point where things taste great, and can be made efficiently.

10 Kryten42 { 06.06.08 at 8:29 pm }

You are right Bryan. 🙂

These recipe’s are from my Italian grandmother (who was married to a Maltese) and while they are a tradition all over Italy (and/or Malta), some have been slightly changed with years or generations of trial and error. I also have some recipe’s from the maternal side of my family. They are English/Irish/Welsh for the most part. But I didn’t get around to transcribing those to computer. My mother had her own cookbook that we had made for her 50th Birthday! Took us 2 years to secretly get her recipes and take secret photos, and my best friend then was an apprentice Bookbinder. 🙂 I have her book now. For me, it was one of the most important memories and keepsakes when she passed away. 🙂

One thing is certain, my family way back then were not at all worried about such things as cholesterol etc! LOL And also, we grew a lot of our own veggies and herbs (and even our own chooks!) 😀 *sigh* Food used to taste so much better when I was a kid. Now, you have to spend a fortune finding really good ingredients, or grow your own. Which is not so simple these days, as I am finding out. 🙂

Anyway, glad you all like them. My grandmother would be very pleased (May she rest in peace)! She had an ‘open house’ policy when it came to food and we would often have neighbors over sampling dishes and many an impromptu parties! And neighbors looked out for each other then. 😀 Yeah… They were the ‘good ol’ days'(tm) Where did they go?

11 Bryan { 06.06.08 at 10:32 pm }

I just saw a new study on Splenda, a sugar substitute my older brother now uses because of health issues, and the studies say that while the taste buds say it is sugar, the brain knows it isn’t and starts asking for the real thing. They think that many of the substitutes may in fact make dieting harder, because the brain knows the difference.

Natural foods taste better because we have eaten them for thousands of years and they are what our bodies want and need.

I should have mentioned that my maternal grandfather was one of 18 with no twins, so family reunions were rather large gatherings.

12 Kryten42 { 06.07.08 at 2:24 am }

Yup! You are right (about food and sugar substitutes), and aspartame will kill you eventually. 😉

Hey! My Mother had 17 siblings (honest!) And would have had 18, but her twin sister died at birth. Mom always said that she always felt that some part of her was missing, even though she never knew about her twin until she was in her 30’s. When she was 16, she lied about her age and tried to join the Navy, then WAF etc… she made such a nuisance of herself, the MOD had to give her a job to shut her up! LOL My maternal granddad was secretly pleased, though he gave her hell for it of course. 🙂 But when They came to Aus after the way, my Mother was the only sibling they brought (or could afford to bring) with them. She told me a story about her older brother who was a Bomber pilot flying a Lancaster. He was home on leave after 2 years and was enjoying a ham and cheese sandwich with fresh baked bread my Gran had made for him (which he said was pure heaven to him) and the air-raid sirens started wailing. They were having a late picnic just out of town, and the town was bombed (apparently it had a factory that made bomb parts). One bomb came crashing down nearby, but miraculously didn’t explode! However, he and his sandwich got covered in oil and mud, and Mom said he screamed horrible revenge at the German bombers for ruining his wonderful sandwich! LOL After that mom said, he was possessed with rage and he volunteered for every raid on Germany, and racked up an impressive score. He was shot down during a massive raid towards the end of the war, and survived in a dinghy but lost a leg that had become infected. He’s still alive in Essex somewhere, I saw him at my Moms funeral several years ago. An amazing man. 🙂

13 Kryten42 { 06.07.08 at 2:26 am }

Drats! ‘after the way’ -> ‘after the war’. Doh! 😉

14 Bryan { 06.07.08 at 1:09 pm }

My grandfather’s oldest brother and sister were left in Switzerland when his parents came over to the US. The problem wasn’t the cost, but at the time there was a rumor that sick children were thrown overboard on the approach to Ellis Island to prevent any health related quarantines. I don’t know if that happened, but I know they believed it.

I can believe that your uncle was that angry. It is often the most mundane of indignities that set people off. Trying to deal with neighbor disputes as a cop teaches you that nothing is too insignificant to result in a murder.

Food was not easy to come by during the war, even when your extended family includes farmers. You feel guilty about having access to food other people can’t even buy. Rationing, which took place on both sides of the Atlantic, and military mess halls make a good anything, a very precious commodity, because you know you can’t just go back in the house, if it’s still standing, and make another.

The total loss of normalcy is one of the biggest indignities of a war. My Mother still makes references to things that weren’t available during World War II.