Sunday, November 7, 2010

Pumpkin/Pistachio/Chocolate Chip Biscotti

Last evening, I was catching up with a dear friend and she said she was going to be baking tomorrow, so she asked me, "do you have any pumpkin cookie recipes you can give me?"  In between changing the batteries in the smoke alarms for the season, I thought about her request and came up with this recipe.

It's no secret, I love biscotti; with it's wonderful flavors and crunchiness, it makes the perfect cookie to have with your morning coffee, tea, hot cocoa, or for coke: ) without feeling guilty about eating a cookie for breakfast.  And, since I'm on a "pumpkin kick," trying out new recipes for Thanksgiving, this seemed like the perfect combination.  I like the pistachios because the green color just goes with the subtle color of the pumpkin and the addition of the mini chocolate chips gives the biscotti a depth of flavor that will be hard to resist. However, you could add your favorite nut and leave out the chocolate or substitute currants if you want a biscotti that reminds you more of pumpkin bread.

The first time I made biscotti was in the 80s.  They had become quite fashionable in coffee and gourmet shops.  I like that they keep and ship well, if you can resist not eating them in one sitting!  They reminded me of Zwieback that my mother would bake for us, especially when we were sick.  She served them with tea and it always made me feel better.

So, Addie, this recipe is for you.  I'm happy to create this for you, but I have an ulterior motive--you have to show me how to make your mom's famous tamales when I see you in January!

Pumpkin/Pistachio/Chocolate Chip Biscotti

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup packed golden brown sugar
2/3 cup canned pumpkin (not pie filling)
1 large egg
1 T Vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cardamon
1/2 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
2/3 cup chopped pistachio nuts
1/2 mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven 350F-degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In the KitchenAid, using the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Add the egg, vanilla, and pumpkin and mix to combine.  Don't worry if it looks curdled; that will change with the addition of the dry ingredients.  Remove bowl from the stand.

Measure out the flour, baking powder, salt, and spices in a bowl.  With a hand whisk, combine the ingredients and add to the pumpkin mixture.  Also, add the chopped pistachio nuts and mini chocolate chips.  

Use a spatula or wooden spoon to combine the ingredients. ( I always mix my dry ingredients by hand into the "wet" for biscotti so I don't over beat with the mixer.)

Spoon "dollops" of dough onto the prepared baking sheet, roughly making a strip that is 12-inches long. The dough is sticky, but resist using "floured" hands to pat it out.  

Instead, I wet my hands, under the faucet, shake off the excess, then, pat the dough to a 3 1/2" x 12" x 3/4"-1" thick.

Place pan in the preheated oven and bake 25 minutes or until firm to touch on top. Lower oven temperature to 325F-degrees for the second baking.  Remove and cool 5-7 minutes.  

Use a large spatula to transfer the cookie strip to a cutting board and with a serrated knife, use a "sawing" motion to cut into 3/4-inch cookies.  

Return the cookies to the baking sheet and bake an addition 8 minutes.  Remove from the oven and turn each cookie over for the second baking, again 8 minutes*.  Remove from the oven and cool a few minutes before transferring cookie to a rack to cool completely.
*If you want a crunchier biscotti, increase the second baking to 10 minutes per side.

This is definitely a recipe I will be making to give (and send) to friends and loved ones, along with a jar of pumpkin butter for Thanksgiving. Enjoy!


  1. Oh my goodness!!!! There really is no end to your culinary creativity!

  2. I loved your stone and fate gave me the perfect one-PEACE! That's what I ask for everyday...thank you sweetheart. Love you, XOXO

  3. These look fantastic! Anything with pumpkin and chocolate has got to be at the top of my list...

  4. Yum! I'm always looking for recipes to use my pumpkin, thanks. These will be great for traveling.

  5. Pumpkin and pistachios sound completely delicious! They just sound like theygo together. I wish I were your neighbor so I could come and sneek some of these sweet treats.

    I do not have your email, but wanted to let you know I am compiling the seed swap so if you are still interested, you can email and I'll give you more info.

    So sad to hear about Ari's pumpkin! We wait till Halloween night to put our's out for the same fear.


  6. Amazing recipe - will be making it today! Thanks for sharing it!