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Holiday Biscotti

Make it for a holiday breakfast. Make it for a hostess present. Make it for your own coffee break during the hectic season. Actually, who needs a reason to fill the kitchen with the scent of anise, hazelnuts and white chocolate? We thank Joan Wallace for this timeless recipe. Her former neighbors in Lake Ann, where she lived for many years, dearly miss her baking talents!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup toasted (see method), chopped hazelnuts
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons anise seed, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cold butter, cut in squares
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup anise-flavored liqueur
  • 12 ounces white chocolate

Preparation

To toast hazelnuts: preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place 1 pound of shelled hazelnuts on a baking sheet and toast for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and rub in a towel to remove the brown skins.

Grease and flour two cookie sheets. Mix the dry ingredients, including the hazelnuts, in food processor. Add butter and pulse in a food processor just until the mixture is crumbly. Mix the eggs and liqueur in a small bowl, then add slowly to the dry ingredients, until they form a dough. Remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a lightly floured surface. Knead slightly and form into four, 1 -inch-wide logs. Place on 2 cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees about 15 minutes, until firm to the touch. Cool the logs on racks, then cut them into O-inch-diagonal pieces and place them, cut side down, on the cookie sheets. Return them to the 350-degree oven and bake 10 minutes, turn, then bake 10 more minutes. Cool on a rack. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave on high for 45 to 60 seconds. Stir with a fork and drizzle over the top crusts of the biscotti. Cool, then store in an airtight container. Makes 3 dozen.