By MATT CRANE
For the caffeine-fiends out there, nothing is better than a fresh cup of coffee in the morning.
As a child of a regular coffee drinker, I was surprised that after years of stopping with my dad in the morning to get a cup of coffee as he took me to school that I never picked up the habit until I graduated from college. During my days as a City Bagel employee, coffee became a life line when my alarm clock went off at 5 a.m. every morning. (Full disclosure — I usually snoozed until about 5:55 a.m. most mornings and high-tailed it to the Bagel just in the nick of time. Sorry, Joe and Mary).
During that time, I began to come to love coffee not only for its rejuvenating powers, but also its wonderful taste. A purist, I only drink my coffee straight out of the pot, black as night, with no cream or sugar to be found.
These days, I am not so big on having my cup o’ joe every single day, but I do still love it. I can love it even more now that, after some research, I have found recipes incorporating coffee.
This featured recipe comes courtesy of Reader’s Digest and is sure to be a hit for both an after-meal dessert or a quick, sweet pick-me-up breakfast bite.
Biscotti are delicious, twice-baked biscuits originally from Italy and can be made using a variety of flavors. This particular recipe calls for a cocoa powder and ground coffee which provides a perfect combination of flavors. The slight bitterness of the coffee paired with the sweetness of chocolate is very complimentary and brings out the best of both flavors. Use your favorite brand of coffee with this recipe, brew up a cup of coffee with it and dunk away.
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3 Tbsp. ground coffee
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
6 Tbsp. cold, unsalted butter, diced
3/4 cup walnuts
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. In a medium bowl with an electric mixer, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, coffee, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the butter and mix until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the walnuts, eggs, and vanilla and mix until a fairly dry dough forms. Divide the dough in two. On a lightly floured surface, use your palms to shape each half of the dough into a 14 x 1 3/4 x 1-inch cylinder. Transfer to the baking sheet and pat the tops of each cylinder to 3/4 inch high. Bake until the logs are firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the dough comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer logs to a cutting board and let cool for 10 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the cookie slices in a single layer on the baking sheet. Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Bake the cookies for 20 minutes, turning once. Transfer the cookies from the baking sheet to a wire rack and cool completely. The biscotti will crisp as they cool.
I hope this recipe serves you well and adds a bit of pep-in-your-step to any morning or evening routine.