These crispy, crunchy biscotti thins are my new favorite snack. And dessert. And breakfast on the run. They are based on a cookie that I have purchased on multiple occasions–almondina. As much as I like them, I cringe at the price, often more than five dollars for a miniscule package filled with no more than a dozen or so cookies.
So I made my own version.
They stray from the original in that I used chickpea flour, plus, they do not have whipped egg whites. What they do have is great flavor and crunch at a fraction of the price of the packaged version (cheap-o me). Love!
These thins are very easy to make, but, they do require some planning ahead because, like all biscotti, they need to bake twice, first in loaf form, second in sliced form. The initial dough is a one-bowl affair: whisk the dry ingredients (chickpea flour, baking powder, salt, etc.), add the wet (milk, oil, extract), and last, stir in the almonds and cranberries.
The dough goes into a 9×5 inch pan (it’s close to a batter than a dough, so a pan is necessary to keep the uniform shape). Chickpea flour browns more quickly than wheat flour, so this initial bake is at 300F, which allows the cookie loaf to become quite firm without overbrowning.
I like to give the nuts and dried fruit a rough chop before adding to the dough because it makes the slicing in phase 2 much easier, especially with these thin slices, which are slightly less than 1/4-inch in thickness; the knife is less likely to catch on big pieces and leave you with a pile of crumbs. Additionally, a rough chop ensures plenty of crunchy and fruity bits in every slice and bite!
Be sure to let the cookie loaf cool entirely before attempting to slice it. It slices easily with a serrated knife once completely cooled, but (trust me, I was impatient with an earlier batch) it will crumble if you rush things and attempt slicing while still warm-ish. I managed to restrain myself from eating more than a cup of crumbles (even mistakes can double as a delicious reward :)).
It took several batches (of browned and burned slices) to realize that I needed to keep the oven temperature as low as possible for the second bake. The goal is to thoroughly dry out the cookies, so that they will become and remain crisp, without turning to ashes on the baking sheet. 175F for an hour worked perfectly; I then turned off the heat and let the cookies remain in the oven for another hour to dry further.
The results are crunchy, lightly sweet and ideal for noshing and nourishing anytime, anywhere. Happy baking, everyone!
- 1-1/4 cups chickpea flour
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar (of your choosing; I used a blonde coconut sugar)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom or cinnamon (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ cup milk (nondairy or dairy)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- ½ cup whole almonds, coarsely chopped
- ½ cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
- Preheat oven to 300F. Grease or spray a 9x5-inch loaf pan.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cardamom and salt. Add the milk, oil and almond extract, stirring until blended and smooth. Stir in the almonds and cranberries. Spoon and spread dough into prepared pan.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 50 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely in pan.
- Preheat oven to 175F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Remove cooled loaf to a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut loaf crosswise into thin slices (just under ¼-inch in thickness). Arrange slices on cookie sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour. Turn off oven and let cookies remain in oven for an additional hour. Cool completely.
Storage: Store the cookies in an airtight container or tin at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months.