Salted Caramel Mocha & Hazelnut Cinnamon Chip Biscotti

Welcome back to Someone’s In The Kitchen! This week we are talking about a delish combo that just goes together. Like all great combos; peanut butter and jelly, music and lyrics, Corey and Topanga…(had to add that one in there ;)), they work and you couldn’t have one without the other. In a world so uncertain, some things are just simply meant to be, agreed? Such is the case with one of my favorite combos, coffee and biscotti! What could be better than a delish cup of coffee with a crispy Italian cookie perfect for dunking? A match made in heaven. 🙂

Salted Caramel Mocha –

(Recipe found @ 52kitchenadventures.com)

I’ve really been into making these fancy homemade coffee drinks lately…as evidenced by the fact that I just recently posted a recipe for a White Chocolate Mocha. Because of that, I questioned whether or not it was too soon to post another coffee recipe. But the delish factor is pretty high for this one, so I thought, what they heck? 🙂  

This Salted Caramel Mocha is hands down my favorite coffee recipe I’ve tried so far! It’s the perfect combo of salty and sweet; with caramel sauce and a pinch or two of sea salt. I’ve never used sea salt in anything before… now I’m wanting to put it in everything (this means more recipes with the word “salted” in it are to come). The sea salt just brings out the rich caramel flavor and complements it perfectly. Again, I used the Starbucks Via packets for this drink, which worked good, but it would probably have a stronger flavor with straight up espresso. The milk and caramel sauce make it really creamy and velvety.

Now, let me talk a minute about the caramel sauce (recipe below). In theory, this recipe should work perfectly… but it just doesn’t. At least not for me anyway. I made it twice, followed the directions to the letter, and each time it was a fail. By the time the sugar dissolved and I added in the butter it was a burning, lumpy, stuck to the pan mess. It was beyond frustrating and was ruining my happy coffee vibe, so I tossed it, and did it my way. And it worked great! This could just be me, it may work for you, but if you’d rather not chance it; my way is 1/2 cup brown sugar, with half a stick of butter melted on medium heat. After it melts, stir in about 1/4 cup of heavy cream. And viola! A much simpler, in my opinion, caramel sauce.

However you do it, I hope you sit back and relax this week with a mug of this lovely Salted Caramel Mocha (also great iced too) and don’t forget the biscotti! 🙂

Ingredients:
1 shot of espresso or 3/4 cup coffee
1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons caramel sauce (see recipe below)
1-2 tablespoons cocoa powder (the hot chocolate kind, not the unsweetened baking kind)
Pinch of sea salt (Starbucks uses a blend of smoked sea salt and turbinado sugar for sprinkling on top)
1/2 cup milk
Whipped cream (optional)
Extra caramel sauce and sea salt to drizzle/sprinkle on top

With an espresso maker:

Prepare espresso. Place caramel sauce, cocoa powder and sea salt in a mug and pour espresso over them. Froth milk and slowly pour into mug, stirring to combine everything. Taste and add more caramel, cocoa and/or salt to taste. Top with whipped cream, drizzle caramel sauce, and a tiny pinch of sea salt.

Without an espresso maker:

Prepare coffee. Place caramel sauce, cocoa powder and sea salt in a mug. Pour coffee into mug, stirring to combine everything. Heat milk in microwave or on the stove and add to mug, stirring everything to combine. Taste and add more caramel, cocoa and/or salt to taste. Top with whipped cream, caramel sauce and a tiny pinch of sea salt.

Salted Caramel Sauce –

Ingredients:
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons salted butter, cubed
1/4 cup heavy cream, at room temperature

Directions: 
In a medium saucepan, cook the sugar over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a spatula (if it becomes lumpy, reduce heat and refrain from stirring). When it turns a deep amber color, add the butter and stir until it is melted. Add the heavy cream and whisk until the caramel is smooth (be careful, it will bubble up when you add the cream). Remove from heat and let cool. Refrigerate extra sauce. (Makes enough for around 3-4 salted caramel mocha or hot chocolate beverages.)

Hazelnut Cinnamon Chip Biscotti –

(Recipe found @ sweetpeaskitchen.com)

Yes, the second half of our lovely couple! This was my first venture into biscotti making and I was pretty happy with the results. This recipe for Hazelnut Cinnamon Chip Biscotti was just calling my name (in an Italian accent of course, okay lame joke, sorry.). It has warm flavors of cinnamon, toasted hazelnuts, and chocolate chips.

The process for the biscotti is really simple, though a bit more time consuming than other types of cookies seeing as how you bake it twice. But it comes out with the perfect crisp to it and tastes lovely with coffee or even without! The only thing I would probably do differently is not use the parchment paper; it stuck to some of the biscotti so bad that I was forced to throw a few pieces away. 😦 So next time I will just grease the pan and save the biscotti. 🙂

Ingredients:
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 ¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 ¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 large eggs
2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ cups hazelnuts, toasted, chopped
1 ¾ cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 large egg white
 
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (Sadly I don’t have one so I just used my hand held mixer),  combine the sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Add the eggs and beat until the color is uniform and the mixture is thick. Add the vanilla and beat until combined, about 5 seconds. Add the flour in two batches and beat until just combined. Scrape down the bowl and mix for a few seconds more. Add the hazelnuts and chocolate chips and beat until just combined.

Turn the dough out onto the prepared baking sheet and shape into a log about 16 inches long, 3 ½ inches wide, and ¾ inch thick. Smooth the surface of the dough. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until firm, but not browned. Let cool on the pan for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees F.

While the log is cooling, whisk the egg white and 2 tablespoons water together and use a pastry brush to brush the egg wash onto the top of the log. Using a serrated knife, cut the log into ¾-inch slices and set them on the baking sheet cut sides up. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

Transfer the individual biscotti to a rack to cool completely. The biscotti will keep in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
 
Yields: 24 large biscotti

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About Krystal Rodriguez

Follower of Christ. Twenty-something from Texas. Blogger. Baker. Music addict. Night owl. Chocoholic. Lover of all things creative. You can find me blogging here: https://thewakingezine.wordpress.com and here: http://softlyspokensimplysaid.blogspot.com :)
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