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February brings us some of winter's coldest weather and a holiday that's meant to be nothing short of hot. So in a month of ironic twists, it only seems fitting to work hard to blend a lot of wonderful things together. That's where this month's offering comes in.
Biscotti is a thing of beauty, but it truly shines when paired with a cup of hot coffee, tea or cocoa. Since most of us are desperate to find a way to keep warm this month, it only seems fitting to feature a dessert recipe that wants to put a mug of hot liquid in your hands! Add to that the delightful combination of tangy dried fruit and rich, tempting dark chocolate and you've got a dessert that was truly meant for February.
You can use any flavor of cake mix for the biscotti, but I like the subtle nature of the French vanilla when paired with the more aggressive flavors of the fruit and chocolate. Of course, you could get extra creative and opt to try your hand at other add-ins such as nuts or flavored chips and change the type of coating or skip it altogether. It's a recipe that gives you an opportunity to flex your creative muscles.
As always, I encourage you to share your recipe ideas and comments. You can always post comments using the forms provided in the articles or email me directly at . Enjoy!
3/4 c. mixed, dried berries -- I use a blend of cranberries, cherries and blueberries
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Combine the cake mix, flour, melted butter, eggs and extract in a large bowl. Mix for 2 minutes or until a soft dough forms. Knead the dried fruit into the dough. Place the dough on a heavy large baking sheet and form into a log that is 3 inches wide and about 14 inches long.
Bake the log for 35 minutes on the baking sheet, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool the log for 35 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the log crosswise into pieces 1/2-inch thick and 3 inches long. Transfer the biscotti to the baking sheet with the cut side down.
Bake the biscotti for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for an additional 40 minutes or until they are dry. Cool completely.
In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate chips and dip one of the cut sides of the biscotti into the melted chocolate. Transfer to wax paper and allow the chocolate to dry before serving or storing.