I don't know about you, but whenever I have coffee, I have the irresistible urge to drink it with something sweet. Cookies. Pie. Cake. So every morning I either finish my coffee with an unsatisfied sweet tooth or a guilty conscience, knowing full well I wasted too many calories on some store-bought pastrty. To avoid these feelings of unfulfillment and self-loathing, I did a quick search for a healthy biscotti recipe and struck gold. This MyRecipes recipe calls for whole wheat flour and flaxseed but don't worry -- there are still dark chocolate and almonds. The best part? Each crunchy cookie is less than 100 calories (and offers a decent dose of protein and fiber)...
Makes: About 30 cookies Prep time: About 30 minutes Cook time: About 35 minutes
Ingredients: 2 cups whole wheat flour 2 tablespoons flaxseed 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon kosher or sea salt 1/3 cup white sugar 1/3 cup dark brown sugar 2 large egg whites 1 large egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon almond extract 2/3 cup dark chocolate chips 3/4 cup unsalted sliced almonds
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine flour, flaxseed, baking soda, and salt in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Using a mixer, combine sugars, egg whites, and egg in a bowl, and beat at high speed for 2 minutes. Add vanilla and almond extracts. Add the dry mixture (flour, flaxseed, etc.) to sugar-egg mixture; stir until combined. Fold in chocolate and almonds.
3. Divide dough into 3 equal portions. Roll each portion into a 6-inch-long roll. Arrange rolls 3 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with a silicon baking mat or parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 22-25 minutes or until firm and light golden brown.
4. Remove rolls from baking sheet; cool 10 minutes on a wire rack or separate plate. Using a serrated knife, cut rolls diagonally into 30 (1/2-inch) slices. Place back onto the baking sheet, cut sides down.
5. Bake at 350° for 5-6 minutes, turn cookies over, then bake additional 5-6 minutes. Cookies should be slightly soft in center. Remove from baking sheet; cool on wire rack or separate plate. Cookies will harden when they cool.
My Notes: Why use a serrated knife? This is especially important because the sharpness of a serrated knife easily cuts through the crunchy but yielding cookie loaf. You need only very little pressure to slice through. If you used a chef's knife (yes, even a sharp one), you'd have to exert more force and run the risk of crumbling the cookies.
Why use almond extract? The whole wheat and flaxseed are enough to overwhelm the nutty flavor, so adding a bit of extract livens it up. If you don't have almond extract, try 2-2.5 teaspoons vanilla extract.
Whole or sliced almonds? The original recipe seems to call for whole almonds, but I find them to be unwieldy in such a small cookie. Sliced almonds are not only easier to eat, but easier to fold into the dough.
Why change the baking temperature? I chose not to lower the temperature when I baked the cookies the second time because I wanted to ensure a crispy, crunchy texture -- not a stale one. Lower temperatures mean slower cooking time, which gives the dough more time to cook slowly and softly.