P & Q: Hazelnut Biscotti

Love biscotti, hate hazelnut.  What should I sub?  What do you need to know?


39 thoughts on “P & Q: Hazelnut Biscotti

  1. Good morning,

    There’s this video on youtube, that shows how really easy it should be to make them.
    – I do however wonder if it really needs all that baking soda for the hazelnut to peel (I may reduce to 1 Tbsp)…. Any idea?

    • I did this once and it totally stained my pot (calphalon) permanently. I would suggest using stainless steel if you go this route. i just do the toasting in the oven and rubbing off the skins with a towel thing now. it doesn’t get rid of all the skin, but enough for most recipes.

    • I was wondering the purpose of all that baking soda!! I boiled 3-5 minutes (unlike what appears in the video!) and the bubbles were just insane! Doesn’t boiling without the baking soda achieve the same thing?

  2. Right with you Jules on the hazelnut! I like the cocoa powder idea – will that be enough to impart a chocolate-y taste? Or do I need chocolate chips too?

  3. Wow! I thought I was the only person who hated hazelnuts! I’m going to try pistachios -I’ve made almond biscotti before and loved them, but think pistachio is on board this time.

  4. I’m doing 3x in a go (tripled the recipe straightaway):
    1 x hazelnuts
    1 x almonds
    1 x hazelnuts, almond and raisins
    (they are in the oven right now)….let’s hope

    No liqueur added but for the 2nd and 3rd one I’ve added pure almond extract.
    Pity I did not thin about adding a bit of cinnamon in the 3rd one…

    PS: I did not add 3 tablespoons of baking soda to the water for the hazelnuts but only one and it worked. Hope it won’t affect the taste.

  5. I have unsalted pistachios sitting in my cabinet, and they’ve been waiting to be used in the perfect recipe…I think this is it! I’m not a huge hazelnut fan either, but I LOVE pistachios.

  6. Good trick for forming the loaves — wet your hands a tiny bit and then mold/smooth them. It’s less sticky for you. Alternatively – use food safe gloves. No sticky mess on your hands!

  7. Just popped my logs into the oven – didn’t see your post, Jules, about wetting your hands. Another trick for shaping them is to tear off a piece of plastic wrap and flour it lightly – then you can wrap the dough in the wrap and roll out the log!

    I had originally swapped out 1/3 c. of cocoa powder for flour – it’s not the same consistency as flour so I needed to add more flour. Hope all of this comes out alright…

    I decided after all to make a chocolate cherry biscotti – used the cocoa powder, swapped cherry kirsch for hazelnut liqueur, almond extract for the vanilla, dried cherries for the hazelnuts – I am really excited about this adventure in baking!

  8. I’ll be baking these at my Mom’s house. Her liquor selection is slim pickings, and she will never ever use up a bottle of hazlenut liquor of I bought one just for this recipe. If I want to omit the liquor component, should I replace it with vanilla extract (so, 3 tsp of vanilla all together)? Any other ideas?

  9. I’m baking these now. I think I already bought blanched hazelnuts, so I skipped the boiling step. We’ll see how it turns out. I read the comment about white chocolate chips and immediately checked to see if we had any I could add to my recipe. Darn! And I already ate all of our M&M’s too, although those might be less sophisticated than white chocolate chips, anyway! I can’t wait to see everybody’s cookies!

  10. If you decide to boil the hazelnut skins off, like in the recipe, be sure to use a LARGE saucepan. I made the mistake of using a smaller pan and the water, baking soda, hazelnut mixture boiled over and brownish black water was everywhere.

    I toasted another batch of nuts in a 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes, let them cool and then placed them on top of a clean kitchen towel. Gathered up the towel ends and shook the nuts vigorously and the skins came off pretty easily. Much cleaner method than the boiling.

    I really liked the biscotti…super easy to make and very crispy, crunchy. Hazelnuts aren’t my favorite nut but in these cookies they were great.

  11. I’ve made quite a few biscotti recipes, and I’ve never worked with such a gloppy dough. And to add insult to injury, I found the biscotti almost entirely flavorless. I was glad I added macadamia nuts and candied ginger, or it would have been bland bland bland.

  12. We are very proud of our biscotti. Used pecans and walnuts with almond extract. The whole family like them and are interested in reading the variations already mentioned above. Thanks everyone!

  13. I was looking forward to making these biscotti over the weekend — but alas, the terrible East Coast derecho thunderstorm-system knocked out power throughout the state, practically.

  14. I cut out 1/4 cup of flour and subbed in 1/4 cup of cocoa. Came out delicious. I can hardly believe that we baked something with absolutely no butter and only 2 eggs. its shocking!

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