Pecorino Cheese & Black Pepper Biscotti

I wanted to make some savory biscotti for over the holidays that would be great to have on hand to serve to guests with a nice glass of red wine, and although I love my Savory Parmesan Biscotti, I wanted something a little different with a more pronounced cheese flavor. I ended up finding a recipe I liked from Epicurious from December 2006. I did increase the amount of cracked black pepper used because I really wanted to be able to taste the pepper. I also used Pecorino Romano cheese in place of the Parmesan as I find the Pecorino to have a stronger flavor, and increased the cheese to 3 cups. In addition, I added two tablespoons dijon mustard to the batter just to give it a little more zip. The biscotti turned out great, and are full of cheese with just a bite from the black pepper. For this recipe it is best to use freshly ground coarse black pepper, and to really ensure the biscotti are golden brown when they are removed from the oven. These biscotti would also make a great holiday gift along with a bottle of red wine!

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2011

Pecorino Cheese Black Pepper Biscotti

A savory biscotti that would be great served with a glass of red wine.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons Cracked Black Pepper
  • 4 Cups All-purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • 3 Cups Grated Pecorino Romano Cheese
  • 1 1/2 Sticks (3/4 Cups) Cold Butter Cut Into Cubes
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and lightly grease two baking sheets.
  2. Take 1/2 tablespoon of the black pepper and 1/4 cup of the grated cheese and mix into a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, remaining grated cheese, and remaining pepper in a bowl.
  4. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour mixture until the mixture is crumbly.
  5. Whisk together 3 of the eggs, the milk, and mustard and then add to the flour mixture and stir until a dough forms.
  6. Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly, then divide into four equal pieces.
  7. Take each piece of dough and shape into a log about 12 inches long.
  8. Place two logs on each baking sheet.
  9. Beat the remaining egg until frothy and then brush the tops of the four logs.
  10. Sprinkle the logs with the remaining cheese and pepper mixture and then bake the logs for about 30 minutes or until golden brown and firm to the touch.
  11. Remove from the oven, reduce oven heat to 300 degrees F. and let the logs rest for 10 minutes.
  12. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs diagonally into i/2 inch slices and place cut side down on the baking sheets.
  13. Bake the sliced biscotti for 15 minutes, then turn and bake another 15 minutes or until golden in color.
  14. Let cool to room temperature and then store in an airtight container.

Adapted from Epicurious, December 2006.