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08 January 2009

lemon-pecan biscotti, gluten-free

lemon pecan biscotti II

(We're thrilled that this recipe is being featured at's roundup of holiday recipes for 2009. For more of our featured posts, visit today.)

I made you this delicious biscotti.

(The book is due frighteningly soon. No time for a story this week. Sorry.)

lemon-pecan biscotti

LEMON-PECAN BISCOTTI, adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

A few weeks ago, these biscotti, flecked with lemon zest and crunchy from crushed pecans, made our snow days much sweeter. Stuck in the house because of icy roads and other drivers who don't know how to drive in the snow (mostly those), we wrote and played with Little Bean and worked on the book.

And made biscotti.

For breakfast on the second day, the Chef dunked a piece of biscotti in his milky coffee. He smiled at me sweetly. And then he made the sad face when I told him that he had eaten the last slice.

I made another batch.

1/2 cup almond flour
1/4 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup potato starch
1/4 cup sweet rice flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
zest of 1 lemon
3/4 cup crushed pecans (I put whole pecans in a bag and smashed them with a rolling pin)

Preparing to bake. Preheat the oven to 350°. Place a piece of parchment paper or a Silpat on a baking sheet.

Sifting and combining the flours. Sift each of the flours through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl. Sift the almond flour particularly well, pushing the last of it through the sieve with the bottom of a heavy glass. Toss in the baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Stir all the ingredients together. Sift the dry ingredients through the sieve again, which will make them one flour.

Creaming the butter and sugar. Place the softened butter in your stand mixer, with the paddle attachment. Start the mixer, beating the butter, and then pour in the sugar. Cream them together until they are smooth, about 3 minutes. Plop in the eggs, one at a time, and continue beating, until the mixture is lovely and fluffy. Toss in the lemon zest and mix. Reduce the mixer speed to as low as it goes.

Finishing the dough. Sift the dry ingredients into the creamed butter and sugar, 1/3 cup at a time, allowing the mixer to run in between batches. When you have finished, the dough will be soft and gathering around the paddle attachment.

Forming the biscotti log. Grab half the dough with your hands and shape it into a long, low log on the baking sheet. Aim for a rough approximation of a log, a little squat and comfortingly uneven. Form a log with the rest of the dough and place it on the baking sheet.

Baking the biscotti. Slide the baking sheet into the oven, on the middle rack. Bake the biscotti until the biscotti logs are golden and somewhat firm, but still somewhat soft, about 15 minutes. Take the baking sheet out of the oven and allow the biscotti to cool for 10 minutes. Move them to a cooling rack and turn your back on them for at least 30 minutes.

Re-baking the biscotti. When the biscotti are entirely cool to the touch, move the biscotti logs back to the baking sheet. Take a large serrated knife and make slices on the bias, all down the logs. (We like our biscotti somewhat thick, but you might want yours more narrow. Just be consistent.) Be gentle. This is a delicate operation. Stand the biscotti slices on their squat bottoms, on the baking sheet. Slide the baking sheet back into the oven. Bake the biscotti until they are unequivacobly browned and crunchy, about 15 minutes.

Cool them entirely before attempting to eat.

Makes 2 dozen biscotti.

These biscotti are even better the second day than they were on first eating. Make enough that you will have more to eat with coffee on a languorous morning. You can easily double this recipe.

Use this recipe as a template and play with the ingredients to make other biscotti. I'm thinking about cardamom and dried sour cherry biscotti....


At 3:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MMMm. Delightful. I think I may make some of these and have my GF mom over to tea next week.

Happy Snow Daze,


At 3:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I LOVE BISCOTTI!! thanks Shaunna.. perfect for a winter weekend!

At 4:44 PM, Blogger Allison the Meep said...

Those look delicious! I'm definitely going to try that recipe.

The first sentence sounded as if you were channeling Napoleon Dynamite when he says "I caught you a delicious bass." I love it.

At 4:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a question for you I hope you address in your book. Will you keep your daughter gluten free? I apologize for overstepping bounds if it's too personal. Trying to puzzle together what to do with our boys since I've been diagnosed.

At 8:03 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

that biscotti looks great! i tried a recipe for a GF lemon biscotti when i was first diagnosed, and it was definitely one of those recipes i fed to the birds. i think i'll definitely give this version a try :) i love the thought of pecans and lemon together!

At 5:34 AM, Blogger Marlow said...

I am so excited to see this recipe!! I tried to make biscotti over the weekend, but it did not work out. Thanks!!

At 9:40 AM, Blogger greeneoisie said...

Thanks for the recipe! How many minutes, approximately, do you bake the biscotti the first time?

At 11:50 AM, Blogger Juju said...

Good luck with the book!

At 4:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

These look really nice. Can I make them though if I don't have a mixer with a paddle attachment?

I've been longing for a KitchenAid for years but unfortunately Santa still hasn't brought me one - d'oh!

At 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you. Please send them to me right way as I can hardly wait and since you went and made them for me and all...oh, oh, that was a line from a movie??! *Smile* They look yummy. Good luck on the last bit of work on the book!

At 9:58 AM, Blogger H.Peter said...

The book. When will it be available?

At 12:52 AM, Blogger Paperback Lover said...

Finally I can buy your book "Gluten-Free Girl" in paperback in Sweden (but of course in English). Good luck with the new book.

At 3:20 PM, Blogger momcan'tdance said...

I, too, am a biscotti lover AND a lemon fiend!!! The biscotti I usually make calls for candied orange peel and orange zest. I am going to get wild and crazy and candy some lemon peels and try them with your recipe! I can't WAIT! I may dip one end in some melted chocolate for a little flair as well!

May I interject to Karla about gluten free options for the boys? I am the only one in my family that has celiac, and because I am the "chief cook and bottle washer" I cook everything gluten free. All my cookies, pizza, pasta...every meal and goodie that I cook or bake is gluten free. The hubby and the kids have one shelf in the pantry where they can keep their cereal and bread. I also have one corner of the kitchen that we dubbed "gluten corner". This is where they pour their cereal, toast their bread (in their own toaster!) and make their sandwiches for lunches.

Shauna, thanks for the yummy post! Can't wait to dabble with biscotti again!


At 3:23 PM, Blogger grub said...

Congratulations on a really nice blog, I'll be visiting back

At 12:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, I love biscotti and I want to make all these recipes but I don't have all these flours. It kind of stops me in my tracks. Where do you get them all?

At 11:03 AM, Blogger sweetpea said...

Just took this out of the oven! It took the better part of the morning, all that sifting but I followed the directions to a tea (except I toasted my pecans) and the result is remarkable. I do not like to bake, nor am I a very accomplished gluten free baker. Thank goodness I would rather something salty than something sweet, but I do like biscotti. I agree, use this as a templet, the variations are endless. I am going to try a dried cranberry with orange zest and toasted almonds next time.

At 4:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That sounds like a great thing to try late February (after we have our big biennial Valentine's Day bash and life has settled down a bit). I can imagine the flavors now ... with a nice cup of tea. I've had GF biscotti once and it was great, but it will be fun to try it on my own--with your critical recipe/help, of course.


At 9:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I made these yesterday and OMG!!! They are so darn good! I subbed 1/2 the pecans for almonds and threw in a handful of dried blueberries. I can't believe I actually had all the flours in the house. I am making more this weekend for sure. Thanks so much for this awesome recipe. Oh yeah, had to bake a bit longer than said.

At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just tried a hazelnut, Valhrona chocolate combo - with a bit of fresh orange zest....totally unreal! You, my dear, are a Godsend! Keep up the awesome blog and sending love to you, the Chef and little one...U all rock!

At 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Once again you've read my mind--I've been craving biscotti in the worst way and the local Whole Foods didn't have any. I'm looking forward to a warm lemony smelling kitchen tonight!

At 9:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOVED the Biscotti!! I had never tried to make it before because I thought it would be difficult. My husband was diagnosed last year and I have been loving your posts to help me be more adventuresome in cooking for him! Thank you so much for all you do!!

At 11:31 PM, Blogger Marsha said...

Last week I enjoyed a whole box of Pamela's Lemon Biscotti (1 a day) and
I kept thinking I have to find a recipe. . .thanks for answering!

At 7:31 PM, Blogger Anne Marie said...

Fantastic! I tried them last night and they have an amazing flavor. I can't wait for the new cookbook. Enjoy some well deserved rest now that the cookbook is submitted!

At 1:36 PM, Blogger Mandy said...

Hi! I love your blog, I was just diagnosed with Celiac and it has been a blessing for me! I wondered, you combine flours a lot, what is your opinion on All-Purpose Gluten-Free flour? Is it better just to mix? Thanks!

At 11:31 PM, Blogger Just Me said...

AMAZING! I made almond/cinnamon. Needed 20 min in my oven. Also used the combination of flours for amazing scones! Thank you

At 10:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just made these and they're amazing ... I added cocoa and chocolate chips. I've baked a lot of regular flour biscotti recipes (I'm new to Gluten Fee)... but this recipe is better than any regular flour recipe that I've tried. Thanks so much.


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