Swix Gingerbread Biscotti

Gingerbread Biscotti

Biscotti, affectionately also known as “little nook” or cantuccini in Italy, are twice baked, sweet and fragrant little cookies, perfect for dipping into… just about anything. Make no mistake, she’s not just another pretty face and would make a sturdy little companion for a cross-country ski excursion.

With heavy white stratus clouds icing the tops of our craggy mountains, it’s only a matter of days before we can don woolen toques and mitts, chuck the skis in the truck and head out.

In a perfect world, the sun would be shining, the snow yielding and powdery, sinking beneath our boots as we tramp to the trailhead with our gear. Of course, hoarfrost is a must and every tree would be dressed in their finest for us.

The first few minutes might cut with the cold, but a shushing glide and kick ignites deep heat that radiates out to tingling fingers and toes. Exposed ice crusts lashes and hair and every breath is a milky swirling nimbus.

Exhausted, exhilarated there would be time for a rest, unzipping packs filled with white chocolate studded trail mix, Christmas oranges, a hot thermos lid filled with something naughty and…

Swix Gingerbread Biscotti


Time to snap out of it… a girl can’t always be out on a mountain trail, so a latte and gingerbread biscotti from Starbucks while running errands has to suffice. They’ve come out with a new version this Christmas.

Most of the recipe “interpretations” online left out one important ingredient listed on the packaging… orange. My recipe is a compilation of a few.. a little bit of this recipe and a little bit of that thrown in… and the result was more satisfying and Christmasy spicy than even I could have dreamed up!

Just a heads-up, the dough was quite sticky… even after refrigerating, so a little flour worked in helped in the handling. The logs looked so pathetically cold and shivery going in, but then the oven heat worked its’ magic and they puffed up with pride! A quick cooling off period, followed by slicing on the diagonal, then back into the oven they went for their final bake. Another cooling off period and they were dipped in a hot spring bath of white chocolate.

One bite and there I was… dreaming of that mountain trail again.

I dare you to eat only one…


Swix Gingerbread Biscotti

Swix Gingerbread Biscotti

Rating: 51

Swix Gingerbread Biscotti


1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup spelt flour

1 tsp baking powder

2 tsp ground cinnamon

3/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground allspice

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

2/3 cup brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup molasses (treacle)

2 tsp vanilla extract

zest from 1 large orange

1/2 cup pecans, chopped


4 oz white Callebaut chocolate


Preheat oven to 350F.

In a mixing bowl, using the paddle attachment, beat eggs. Add brown sugar, molasses, vanilla and orange zest. Beat to mix in thoroughly.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, spelt flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice. Whisk to blend.

Slowly add the flour mixture to the eggs mixture, mixing at a low speed and just until blended. Stir in pecans. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Remove from the fridge, separate into two and form into balls.

Using your hands, shape each ball into a long rectangle about 1 1/2? x 12” (I found it easiest to form right on the silpat lined baking sheet, the dough was less likely to stick. If too sticky, add a bit of flour.)

Bake these two logs on a nonstick baking sheet or on a silpat lined sheet for about 25-30 minutes, or until firm to the touch. Remove to a wire rack and cool.

Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.

Once logs are cool enough to handle, slice with a serrated bread knife on the diagonal. (This makes the biscotti longer. If you wish to have tinier biscotti, just cut straight across.)

Lay the cookies on their side, cut side up on the cookie sheet. Bake again for about 10-15 minutes, or until lightly browned. Bake for less time for slightly softer and less dry biscotti. Lay cookies on wire cooling rack.

Once completely cooled, drizzle with melted white chocolate or brush on with a rubber spatula.

Melted Chocolate

Fill a saucepan 1/3 full of water. Bring to a simmer. Place a wide-mouthed metal bowl over top of the saucepan. Loosely chop white chocolate and place in the metal bowl. Stir until melted. Be careful, chocolate burns easily.

I thought the sprinkles looked like snowflakes…



  • Lisa - November 17, 2011 - 5:12 pm

    What beautiful pictures (I especially like that egg-holder – I’ve never seen one like it)! I love the recipe, too. It makes me wish I was a better cook. Perhaps over the holidays …ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 20, 2011 - 9:46 pm

      Thanks Lisa… just do it! The more you cook the better you’ll be:)ReplyCancel

  • ceciliag - November 17, 2011 - 5:56 pm

    Just for a laugh I shall confess to you that I thought for the longest time that hoarfrost was spelt WHORE frost!! I had a big laugh when I found out I was wrong!! at age 13 or something.. cReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 17, 2011 - 11:48 pm

      Hahahaha, that’s so funny! I’m sure you’re not the only one!ReplyCancel

  • Kristy - November 17, 2011 - 7:32 pm

    Oooh! Smidge! These look delicious!!!! These have all of the ingredients of my favorite Christmas cookie. :) And LOVE the pictures. Those mountain scenes are just pristine!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 17, 2011 - 11:48 pm

      Thanks Kristy! I can hardly wait to pack some and get outdoors this winter!ReplyCancel

  • ChgoJohn - November 17, 2011 - 7:36 pm

    Your subject matter of your photos couldn’t be more different, yet both are beautifully done. These biscotti will be perfect for the holidays ahead. What a great recipe!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 17, 2011 - 11:51 pm

      Ahhh, I love photography… no I love baking… no writing! It’s great to be able to do it all, isn’t it! Thanks so much! Are you almost ready for your Thanksgiving?ReplyCancel

      • ChgoJohn - November 18, 2011 - 12:10 am

        Shhh! My friends & I have decided to go out for dinner this year — and I am so relieved! I absolutely love to cook the meal but hate, every bit as much, the preparation before and the clean-up after. I’ll cook them a dinner later during the holidays but this Thanksgiving I’m going to relax!ReplyCancel

        • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:19 am

          Well, I can keep a secret:) Our family also takes turns and I thoroughly enjoy visiting someone else’s home, bringing a token dish and savoring every bite of their inspiring meal… and wine!ReplyCancel

  • spicegirlfla - November 17, 2011 - 8:17 pm

    I’m a total biscotti lover! My jar is never empty! and soon it will be filled with these wonderful gingerbread biscotti! I will think of your snowy pics every time I take a bite!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 17, 2011 - 11:52 pm

      I’m thinking of trying a few other flavors… if you do bake these, be careful not to over bake… mine turned a touch dry!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - November 17, 2011 - 9:55 pm

    Spellbinding photos, Smidge!ReplyCancel

  • kathryningrid - November 17, 2011 - 11:58 pm

    So many favorite ingredients together in one recipe–GORGEOUS. Smidge, you are a troublemaker! Of the best kind, mind you, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to go off the deep end with this one, and I’m pretty sure it’s you that’s leading me astray. Oh, well, I’ll just have to learn to live with my naughtiness. Bet some biscotti can help me with that! :D ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:20 am

      Hmmm naughty or nice? I think I’ll go with naughty:) I enjoy being a bit of a troublemaker now and then…ReplyCancel

  • Kay aka Babygirl - November 18, 2011 - 12:33 am

    Those are some amazing photos. I mean they are breathtaking and stunning. And lets not forget these Gingerbread Biscotti’s.. delish! I always feel warm and cozy after I leave this blog.ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:21 am

      Thanks! I love photography.. not sure which I love more to be honest… and if you get cold, I have a spare toque for ya!ReplyCancel

  • thecompletecookbook - November 18, 2011 - 12:34 am

    Firstly your mountain shots are absolutely magnificent! Right, now onto your biscotti, well they too are absolutely magnificent and taken to the next level of decadence with the chocolate on top.
    :-) MandyReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:21 am

      Thanks Mandy… I was hoping to drizzle chocolate across but couldn’t figure out how to get the chocolate soft enough… that’s another whole world to explore for me!ReplyCancel

  • Misk Cooks - November 18, 2011 - 1:13 am

    Your photos are always top-notch, and these are no exception. So beautiful! And of course the biscotti is always a winnter, too. :) ReplyCancel

  • rutheh - November 18, 2011 - 5:09 am

    Stunning photographs and delicious recipe. Going to make them for sharing this week,ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:23 am

      Good luck, then… as mentioned to someone above, I overcooked mine a bit so make sure you take them out early, let them cool and take a “bite” test… you can always rebake if needed:)ReplyCancel

  • cookiemomma - November 18, 2011 - 5:13 am

    Your photos are beyond magnificent. Being from southern Louisiana, those are like a dream come true to me. Thanks for the amazing recipe. I have no idea how I haven’t come across your blog until now, but I am definitely glad I did!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 8:16 am

      I am so glad you did as well:) I’m glad I could show you a little bit of our Calgary/Canadian landscape.ReplyCancel

  • Sara - November 18, 2011 - 8:23 am

    Love the use of spelt flour and a gingerbread version of biscotti! Perfect winter twist on these cookies.ReplyCancel

  • Courtney - November 18, 2011 - 8:54 am

    Gorgeous pics! Where do you live – it looks amazing! The biscotti looks pretty festive, too! (Wow, that was a lot of exclamation points.)ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:27 pm

      I live in Calgary, Alberta, but these were taken near a trip we took around the Radium, BC area of the Rocky Mountains!!ReplyCancel

  • niasunset - November 18, 2011 - 9:57 am

    What a great post, photographs, your expressions, and recipe… You are amazing dear Barbara, there is no way, I must make this biscotti because of these beautiful mountain scenes… Especially one of them fascinated me, is there a lake there and I can see the reflection of mountain… This was great shot. (number 3)… Thank you, you really carried me into these mountains… Have a nice weekend, with my love, niaReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:29 pm

      I think you are amazing, a very poetic photographer:) I’m glad you enjoyed these.. I will have a lovely weekend and hope you do as well xo BarbaraReplyCancel

  • Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - November 18, 2011 - 10:15 am

    I love how you keep reinterperting and improving Starbucks. I never set foot in there, too rich for my blood and too sweet et al. So I love coming here and seeing your better than Starbucks stuff.ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 18, 2011 - 7:29 pm

      Thanks, not sure if I’m less sweet but def less expensive:) Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial - November 18, 2011 - 12:51 pm

    Beautiful photos of white, nice to see as we enter a weekend of 30C temps! Your biscotti looks wonderful – love that you used spelt flour!ReplyCancel

  • glutenfreezen - November 18, 2011 - 1:29 pm

    Mmm…I need those right now with a hot cup of pumpkin spice hot chocolate.ReplyCancel

  • cityhippyfarmgirl - November 18, 2011 - 10:12 pm

    Beautiful, beautiful white mountains. Oh to be living near that! I don’t think you would ever find me inside if I did. Whooosh! (as I slid past on skewiff ski’s.)ReplyCancel

  • hotlyspiced - November 19, 2011 - 5:10 am

    What beautiful images. And I love biscotti. I can’t imagine living in a white world but I would love to experience it.ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 19, 2011 - 10:41 pm

      Thanks so much. It is beautiful here when it’s white.. after a chinook wind rolls in and melts everything it’s not as pretty… but warmer:)ReplyCancel

  • sourdoughtheangrybaker - November 19, 2011 - 8:55 am

    Beautiful work overall! Just a cup of hot cocoa to go with those biscotti and everything would be right in the world.ReplyCancel

  • trixfred30 - November 19, 2011 - 4:50 pm

    The mountains sound good enough to eat (metaphorically obviously…..or am I serious!?)ReplyCancel

  • Savory Simple - November 19, 2011 - 6:21 pm

    These look absolutely wonderful, perfect for dipping if coffee. Your photos are lovely.ReplyCancel

  • Aimee@clevermuffin - November 19, 2011 - 7:33 pm

    I love the addition of the orange here – it’s so frustrating when you’re trying to recreate something and can’t *quite* figure out what that missing ingredient is! I’m looking forward to trying these.ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 19, 2011 - 10:44 pm

      I was actually surprised at how detailed the packaging was. Maybe there are new rules in that regard… in any event, it’s easier to figure out what’s needed:)ReplyCancel

  • thedrivencook - November 20, 2011 - 6:59 pm

    Mmmm I love gingerbread and biscotti. The glaze looks lovely, too!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 20, 2011 - 8:07 pm

      Thanks… the chocolate glaze was the most difficult part.. getting the right temperature and not adding cold milk:PReplyCancel

  • bitsandbreadcrumbs - November 20, 2011 - 7:51 pm

    I love making biscotti during the holidays for gifts and for eating. This one looks like a great addition to the December biscotti lineup!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 20, 2011 - 8:08 pm

      I was thinking gifts as well… do you have a biscotti recipe as well? I’m on the look out for one!ReplyCancel

      • bitsandbreadcrumbs - November 21, 2011 - 8:01 am

        Actually I do have one that I plan to post in a bit…I make it every year and it’s not my own original recipe but it’s outstanding. Chocolate, hazelnut and ginger biscotti. Maybe I’ll make my first batch next weekend and share, that sure would make my husband happy…he could eat the whole batch!ReplyCancel

  • thefooddoctor - November 21, 2011 - 2:15 am

    I LOVE biscotti and I look forward to trying your recipe.
    As for your dare, eating just one requires self control that I lack around biscottiReplyCancel

  • Mama's Gotta Bake - November 21, 2011 - 10:31 am

    Your beautiful photos and poetic writing took me on a lovely journey. And what better way to end than with gingerbread biscotti! BRRRRRR!ReplyCancel

  • veronica larsen - November 21, 2011 - 11:18 pm

    Of course what I notice is that adorable egg dish from Anthropologie. I secretly want it so badly.ReplyCancel

  • TasteFood - November 22, 2011 - 8:29 am

    Well, you now have me dreaming of having those mountains out my door and those biscotti. I can at least make the biscotti!ReplyCancel

  • The Hook - November 22, 2011 - 1:42 pm

    Very cool opening shots!ReplyCancel

  • promenadeplantings - November 27, 2011 - 1:43 pm

    Stunning photos! I can imagine it all now. And a great recipe too :) ReplyCancel

  • mmarnall - November 29, 2011 - 12:20 pm

    Wow! This looks absolutely amazing. I might have to make this for the blog :) Also, the pictures of the snow and mountains are gorgeous!! I love those landscapes, makes me wish I spent half the year out west…or at least a month.

    Ps. Love your new background cookie collage and post signature!ReplyCancel

    • Just A Smidgen - November 29, 2011 - 4:21 pm

      Be my guest, it would be an honor:) Doesn’t blogging make you want to travel.. or feel like we already have?? And.. thanks!! Wasn’t sure if the cookies were a bit too “busy” as a background..ReplyCancel

  • “Those” Biscotti | bits and breadcrumbs - November 29, 2011 - 9:25 pm

    [...] that have caught my attention recently and that I want to try, namely the gingerbread biscotti at Just A Smidgen, the orange ones at Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide and the limoncello ones at Savoring Every [...]ReplyCancel

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