Guess what’s coming back to Masterpiece Theater this Sunday? If you guessed Grantchester GIVE YOURSELF A STAR. Are you all as excited as I am? It’s a delightful little ITV import that’s based on the novels of James Runcie’s about a crime solving vicar (that’d be Sidney, btw), his labrador Dickens (as in WHAT THE DICKENS), and his friend police Inspector Geordie Keating.
So … Sidney Chambers, this biscotti is for you. Or, rather, this biscotti IS you. Whiskey soaked peaches a nod to your anti-establishment drink of choice and your wonderfully copper colored hair, hazelnuts for the color of your eyes, and a sugar-ginger sprinkle because your hair really is rather gingery (even though it’s suppose to be brown).
NOTE: This biscotti takes a bit of prep work. First you’ll want to soak the dried peaches (if you in fact want to soak them), I have done it over night or just for an hour – all you want is for all the liquid to be absorbed. Also if you find yourself with raw hazelnuts you’re going to need to remove the skins (dry roasted hazelnuts are good to go as they are), don’t panic just follow the directions here for a little kitchen science and you’ll be good to go.
NOTE: I am developing a gluten free version of this recipe (holy learning curve, Batman) and once I get it completely sussed out I’ll create a post for it.
Whiskey Soaked Peach and Hazelnut Biscotti
1 stick butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 TBSP vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup dry roasted hazelnuts
3/4 cup dried peaches (measurement BEFORE soaking in whiskey)
1 1/2 TBSP whiskey (optional)
6-8 pieces crystallized ginger
2 tsp sugar
Preheat oven to 350.
Using the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until fully incorporated. Add vanilla mix to incorporate.
In a separate bowl mix together flour, baking powder, and salt. Slowly add flour mixture to creamed butter and sugar mixture. Continue to mix until dough has formed.
Mix in peaches and hazelnuts.
Scoop dough out onto a Silpat (or parchment paper) covered baking sheet and form into a roughly 15×4 inch block. Pop tray into refrigerator as you make the ginger-sugar (refrigerating is ESPECIALLY important if you soaked your peaches … the extra moisture changes how the biscotti bake and I’ve found chilling things down helps immensely).
Using a mortar and pestle grind together 6-8 pieces of crystalized sugar and 2 tsp sugar. Final consistency should be that of gritty, wet sand. Remove biscotti dough from fridge and rub ginger-sugar over the top of the dough (I didn’t use all of the ginger-sugar, but use as much or as little as you like).
Bake until a light golden color (approx. 25 minutes). Remove from oven and cool for 20 minutes.
Carefully remove log from baking sheet to cutting board. Using a long knife (serrated if you prefer – I use a butcher’s knife) slice log into 1/2 inch wide pieces.
Return pieces to baking sheets, and return to oven. Bake for additional 15-20 minutes.
Remove biscotti from oven, and place on a cooling rack, they will continue to “crisp” as they cool. Store in an airtight container.