Power Biscotti from Blissful Basil

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“…I’ve finally learned to greet anxiety with gratitude, because it is not my enemy but my teacher. And it’s taught me one of the greatest lessons of all: When faced with a problem, you can choose to avoid it, you can walk around it, and you can pretend that it doesn’t exist, but you will repeatedly run into its pain until you open your heart to its purpose.” Ashley Melillo, Blissful Basil

It’s no secret I’m a quote fan (and I love to include one in each issue of In the Glow), but lately I’ve been looking to them more and more for inspiration. I don’t know if it’s the dreary, sunless winter days of late or simply the phase that I seem to be in, but I’m craving new perspectives, some external sources of wisdom to reframe my thought patterns. The above quote from Ashley really spoke to me, so I thought I’d share it with you today!

I’ve been talking a lot with friends lately about how labels—both those we are given and those we give ourselves—can hold us back. We all have them, don’t we? Ways of thinking about ourselves can become an invisible boundary (conscious or subconscious) we never attempt to grow beyond because we actually believe that we can’t. It’s when you tell yourself NOPE before even giving yourself a chance. It’s a self-imposed personal growth ceiling. It’s thinking, I’m too this, or not enough that. Or how about, I don’t have that skill set; I’m not that type of person. Before long, a single label can start to represent our whole selves, rather than just a PART of what makes us who we are (and who we are is pretty awesome, by the way).

I often use the anxiety label as a reason for why I can’t do something. But what if I viewed my struggles with anxiety as something that makes me stronger? Something that if talked about openly could lift me (and maybe others) up, and take away its power to hold me back? Having shame about something and burying it deep below the surface seems to only give it more leverage. Our struggles are what make us human and relatable and we shouldn’t be embarrassed by them, ya know?

Think about something you have long thought of as a personal disadvantage or weakness. Now, try to picture yourself taking small steps to overcome it, and imagine that feeling of personal strength that you’d get from doing so. It feels good, right? Scary too, perhaps, but good. It won’t be an overnight success story, but the fight will be worth it.

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For many of you, the author of the lovely quote at the top of this post needs no introduction; Ashley, the author, photographer, and recipe creator of Blissful Basil, has been blogging for a little over 6 years now. Her quest for inner peace led her to discover the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle, and she never looked back. The quote is an excerpt from the introduction of her beautiful new cookbook, Blissful Basil. Just like on her blog, Ashley’s voice and vulnerability are so beautifully intertwined throughout this book. Her passion for creating feel-good recipes just leaps from the pages, and I think it’ll inspire you, too.

A few recipes you’ll find within these pages are: Simple Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Glaze, Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Tahini-Cilantro Vinaigrette, Sloppy Shiitakes with Tangy Rainbow Slaw, and Baked Yellow Split Pea Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce. I’m thrilled to share Ashley’s Power Biscotti recipe with you today. (Many of you asked for this recipe when Ashley did an OSG Instagram Takeover last year, so it’s coming full circle!) Made with a base of ground sunflower seeds (grain-free biscotti, what!?) and very lightly sweetened with maple syrup, it’s about as healthy as biscotti gets. Upon first bite, I wasn’t too sure about the subtle flavour, but as my taste buds adjusted for the reduced sweetness (compared to traditional biscotti) I came to love this healthified version and found myself reaching for it non-stop.

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Power Biscotti

Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free

By

5 from 3 reviews
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These crunchy snacks were specially designed to be nutrient-rich down to their last grain-free bite. Rather than grain-based flour, these biscotti are made with homemade sunflower seed flour. Dried fruit, pepitas, and cacao nibs are folded in to offer pops of texture, while pure maple syrup provides subtle sweetness. These biscotti make a fantastic energizing snack or breakfast that you can grab on your way out the door. Don't forget to decrease the oven temperature to 275°F (135°C) after the first bake time or you'll risk burning the biscotti during the second and third baking rounds. Shared from Blissful Basil by arrangement with BenBella Books. Copyright © 2016, Ashley Melillo. The recipe below is lightly edited to reflect my own testing process.

Yield
12 to 14 biscotti
Prep Time
Cook time
Total Time

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon (7 g) ground flaxseed
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) filtered water
  • 2 cups (300 g) raw shelled sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon (8 g) arrowroot starch
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) dried cherries, cranberries, or blueberries, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup (53 g) raw pepitas
  • 2 tablespoons (18 g) cacao nibs (optional)
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) pure vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the ground flaxseed and water. Set aside for 5 minutes to thicken.
  3. Meanwhile, add the sunflower seeds to a food processor and process for 45–60 seconds, or until you have a coarse flour or fine meal, stopping to pulse several times to ensure even processing. The texture should be flour-like; be careful not to overprocess or you’ll end up with sunflower butter.
  4. Transfer the sunflower flour to a large mixing bowl and whisk in the arrowroot and sea salt. Stir in the dried fruit, pepitas, and cacao nibs (if using).
  5. Add the maple syrup and vanilla extract to the small mixing bowl with the flaxseed mixture and vigorously whisk to combine. Pour over the dry sunflower mixture, and use a large wooden spoon to mix well for about 30 seconds. At first it will seem like there isn’t enough liquid, but keep stirring until the liquid is evenly dispersed and you have a damp dough.
  6. Turn the dough out onto the lined baking sheet, and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Use lightly wet hands to shape and compact the dough into 2 tightly packed rectangles. Each rectangle should be approximately 4 × 6 inches, and just shy of 1 inch thick.
  7. Bake for 18–22 minutes, or until the edges are light golden brown and each rectangle feels well set, yet retains a soft indentation when gently pressed. Remove from the oven and cool for about 20 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, decrease the oven temperature to 275°F (135°C).
  9. Once the biscotti rectangles are mostly cool, use a sharp knife to cut them widthwise into 1-inch-thick slices, pressing straight down and rocking the knife back and forth to slice rather than using a sawing motion. You should have a total of 12–14 biscotti, 6–7 from each rectangle.
  10. Carefully return the biscotti to the lined baking sheet, sliced-side down. Bake for 16–18 minutes. Then, carefully flip each biscotti, and bake for another 16–18 minutes, or until a light golden brown and crisp to the touch. They’ll continue to crisp as they cool, so keep that in mind when testing for doneness.
  11. Carefully transfer the biscotti to a wire cooling rack. Cool completely. Store in an airtight glass container to maintain crispness. They’ll keep for up to 1 week at room temperature, or you can store them in the freezer for a bit longer.

Tips:

Oven temperatures may vary greatly, so be sure to keep an eye on the biscotti during all three stages of baking to avoid burning it.

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Before I go, I want to let you know about a fun interview I did with Anna and Nia from Vegan Creative. They’ve shared their review of Oh She Glows Every Day, too, so be sure to check out their post!

Let's get social! Follow Angela on Instagram (@ohsheglows + @theglowspot), Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Snapchat, and Google+

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{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Laura ~ Raise Your Garden January 30, 2017

So with you on the labels! I haven’t had to deal with much anxiety until pregnant. For some reason this pregnancy is causing all sorts of anxiety issues which aren’t fun! At first, I blamed it on 4 years of infertility drugs, which I’m sure why a plant based diet benefits me even more. But now I wonder if just the label of introvert is keeping me back. My husband is Mr. Social and wants to entertain every weekend. At 24 weeks, I’m super tired, but I don’t want to blame it on being introverted either. But maybe meeting in the middle is the key. Instead of feeding and cooking a huge meal for many people, it’s probably ok to make some tea and biscotti =)

I will most definitely be checking out Ashley’s blog and be making some biscotti!

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2 Angela Liddon January 31, 2017

I can relate to the increased anxiety during pregnancy (and postpartum). I think it’s helpful not to be too hard on yourself. I love the idea of “meeting in the middle”; it’s so easy to think of things as all or nothing, but they don’t have to be. I hope you find your happy medium soon. Best of luck with the rest of your pregnancy!

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3 Cara January 30, 2017

Definitely with you on the labels. My label was “disorganized”–until I decided it wasn’t. It’s not like I magically got organized because I decided I wasn’t disorganized–but until I believed it was possible, it was hard to even try.

I’ll definitely be trying this recipe–I LOVE crunchy breakfast cookies! (And it’s good if they’re healthy, because that’s unfortunately not always a requirement for me :-P )

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4 Karlie Kashat January 30, 2017

These look AMAZING – she is so creative + relatable. Have a good week Angela <3

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5 Paige January 30, 2017

These biscottis look so yummy!

Paige
http://thehappyflammily.com

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6 Angela Liddon January 31, 2017

They’re absolutely delish, Paige! I’d definitely recommend them. :)

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7 Bev January 31, 2017

Love your recipes but I so wish you would include nutritional info with them

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8 Cindy January 31, 2017

I second this request for nutritional info with each recipe.

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9 Bobbye January 31, 2017

This brought to mind Deepak Chopra’s quote: We each carry around a virtual resume that contains the many ways we identify ourselves. In every moment we are defining ourselves… and at the same time limiting ourselves. If we want to experience expansion, we need to broaden our understanding of all the things we are and everything we are capable of doing. Question your self limiting definitions. In reality, we are much more than we can imagine.

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10 Angela Liddon January 31, 2017

Wow, I hadn’t come across that quote before. So good! Thanks for sharing :)

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11 Nicole January 31, 2017

For me, it’s a work label. I tend to think I should be able to breeze through my day because I am ” just a daycare provider”.
I don’t invest in nice work clothes because I am “just a daycare provider”
I don’t have a career, “I’m just a daycare provider”

Well, my family and daycare moms have told me differently and encouraged me to see and understand that my position in the lives of their children is so very much more than “just a daycare provider” I consider myself so lucky to have their children in my days and in my life, but it took some time for me to get past that minimizing label.

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12 Kate January 31, 2017

I really needed this post and that quotation today!

I absolutely agree about labels, too. It took many years to have some important breakthroughs about the labels I was assigned and the ones I put on myself, and it’s something worth more reflection. Thanks as always for the food and life inspiration!

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13 Michelle January 31, 2017
Recipe Rating:

I made this tonight and they turned out amazing. I made them ‘Earl Grey’ and added the pepita seeds, and left out the fruit and cacao nibs. I steeped strong earl grey and used that for the flax mixture, and then added one tablespoon of earl grey tea and the zest of a lemon. They taste amazing!

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14 Angela Liddon February 1, 2017

Oh, what a great twist, Michelle!

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15 Caroline February 1, 2017

Hello Angela,
Looking forward to trying this, love all the recipes with sesame seeds.

I discovered a really excellent site to manage and thingk about the day to day in general, really good , check out http://www.pinchmeliving.com ,it has been so good for me, thought I would pass along :)

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16 Angela Liddon February 1, 2017

Thanks for sharing, Caroline. I’ll be sure to check that site out!

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17 Veronica February 1, 2017

These look so good. And they seem easy to swap out ingredients. Can’t wait to try them!

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18 Morgan Kozyn February 1, 2017

Hi Angela,
I wanted to let you know that I have both of your cookbooks and I have been making your crazy delicious recipes for years. I truly want to thank you for all that you do and your life that you share with all of us. I label you as an all Canadian girl (sorry for the label) :) Someone I would love to be friends with. I live in Victoria, BC with my husband and 2 daughters and you are a true inspiration in my life. I have embraced cooking because of you.

Thank you!
Morgan

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19 Danielle Masella February 2, 2017

Please sign me up

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20 Courtney February 2, 2017

These look amazing, and I am excited to bake them this weekend. My cousin is having a baby very soon, and I have been cooking and freezing so many of your recipes for her to enjoy once her little one arrives. This will be such a healthy snack addition. Thank you for keeping cooking fun for me!

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21 Angela Liddon February 2, 2017

That’s so thoughtful of you, Courtney! I’m sure she’ll appreciate all the frozen meals and treats you’ve prepared a ton. :)

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22 Victorine Sara February 2, 2017

So good, I’ve been looking for a biscotti recipe, this one is perfect!

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23 Sarah Hong February 3, 2017

Hello!

My name is Sarah Hong and I am contacting you in regards to a collaboration with your Instagram account @ohsheglows. I am the Marketing Manager for a company called Teami Blends and we now have new products on our website called MatchaMi. It is Organic, USDA Certified Japanese green tea powder that has an almost endless amount of health benefits.

Benefits:
Accelerates Weight Loss
Burns Calories
Boosts Metabolism
Increases Energy & Focus
High in Antioxidants
Detoxifies the Body
Strengthens the Immune System
Improves Cholesterol

Here are a few examples of what kind of posts we would like from you!
matcha lattes
smoothie recipes
bowls
baking
traditional tea
ANYTHING CREATIVE! :)

I will be sending over the Matcha bag with a whisk/shaker!

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24 Susan February 4, 2017
Recipe Rating:

I just received your cookbook in the mail. Reading through the exciting recipes I now have all hope for my new vegan, gluten free lifestyle. I closed the book and literally kissed it! Talk about labels that limit our own growth- I have one that says “I’m not really great in the kitchen”. So, I decided to change that by googling “most popular gourmet vegan cookbooks”. I must be ready to change to “really great cook” because I am hitting the pillow tonight knowing I can do this forever and for others. Thank you so much Angela for my beautiful new Oh She Glows Everyday cookbook! Your recipes replace all the familiar comfort foods and feel so easy to whip up. I even stayed up late to organize my kitchen! I can’t wait to get started. Thanks again for creating such a complete work of beauty that will nourish many, many souls. All the best to you and your family!

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25 Angela Liddon February 8, 2017

Thank you for the sweet, warm comment, Susan! I hope you absolutely love the new book.

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26 Annie February 4, 2017
Recipe Rating:

These were delicious! I made a half batch and used a mix of apricot, cranberries, and raisins for the fruit. Sooo yummy. Crisp on outside, slightly creamy on the inside. I can’t believe a base of sunflower seeds can achieve this. They were way better than I expected!

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27 Libby February 4, 2017

Do you have an alternative to maple syrup? I’d prefer not to have the sugary sweetness.

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28 Angela Liddon February 14, 2017

I’m sorry I don’t! I would recommend contacting the author, Ashley, to see if she has any ideas. :)

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29 Kate Gentle February 4, 2017

These turned out wonderful. Served them at a wine evening with the ladies and everyone complimented them.

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30 Stefanie February 4, 2017
Recipe Rating:

hey angela, these biscuits sound simply amazing! ever since i’ve been to italy i miss these like crazy, we don’t really do that here in austria. already working on my grocery list, will definitely make them next week, thanks so much for the recipe :) if you ever need new inspirations for more vegan recipe ideas, i’d love if you stop by at eatwholegreens.com to explore more vegan awesomeness!

cheers, stäf | eatwholegreens.com

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31 Dana Frank February 4, 2017

Hi Angela,

I liked the line where your wrote, “Something that if talked about openly could lift me (and maybe others) up, and take away its power to hold me back?” A few years ago, as I was discovering my passion for nutrition, I came across your first Oh She Glows cookbook. I remember being very affected by reading your introduction, health journey, and struggles to overcome issues with eating. I shared in these struggles and it was very cathartic to hear it voiced by another. Your vulnerability and storytelling certainly helped to lift me up and free me of feelings that it wasn’t okay to discuss such things. Your book also led me to your blog and the blogs of many others and I’m grateful for being introduced to this online world of amazing people. I also share in the struggle with anxiety and am trying to find ways to reframe my patterns of thinking as well. My boyfriend recently sent me this article and I found it to be fairly helpful and thought-provoking.

http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/talk-to-god-about-your-anxiety

I then came up with the idea of creating an anxiety prayer journal, with the notion that whenever I was feeling particularly anxious, I could write it out and pray about it to God, leaving things in his hands. I also thought this might help me to recognize patterns to my anxiety so that I can see recurring thoughts and try to learn to stop these unhelpful thoughts in their tracks. I’m also trying to become increasingly meditative and mindful so as to be more focused on the present moment and less on worries of the future which likely will never come to fruition. I hope this is of some help. Thanks for all that you do!

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32 Gustavo Woltmann February 5, 2017
Recipe Rating:

This recipe is perfect. Thank you for sharing.

– Gustavo Woltmann

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33 Amanda February 5, 2017

Wow did this post ever speak to me and the point I’m at in my life! As someone who has dealt with anxiety my whole life I’m just figuring out how to not let it define me. It’s always been a bit of an excuse for not doing things and I am finally at a point where I can embrace it and move past. It has opened up so many doors for me and it feels amazing!
Thank you so much for doing what to you and continuing to be so frank and open about these sorts of topics! The vegan recipies are what initially drew me to your blog, but your honesty about your struggles, anxiety and life that have kept me coming back for years. You are such a lovely source of light and thoughtful insight and I appreciate you making it available to the world.

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34 Anna Lee February 5, 2017

I LOVE Blissful Basil. Her recipes are always so delicious and refreshing. I can’t wait to make these. They sound fantastic!

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35 Megan @ Detoxinista February 5, 2017

Love this post, Angela. I also feel like I struggle with letting go of labels and “self-imposed personal growth ceilings.” I think my anxiety gets worse with having a new baby, too. It’s like I suddenly realize that I’m more pressed for time than ever before, and yet I have so many goals and things on my to-do list! It can feel paralyzing to even know where to start. I’m learning to ask for more help so I can delegate some of my responsibilities, because there are literally not enough hours in a day anymore. It’s challenging for me to let go a bit, but baby steps, right? Thanks for sharing, and I’m off to go check out Blissful Basil’s new book. <3

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36 Vanessa February 9, 2017

Hi Angela,

I just want to start by saying your cookbooks have changed my life and I absolutely love all your recipes.

I recently attempted to make these biscotti and I followed every direction but at the end, they crumbled on me, I was wondering if you had suggestions on how I can help hold the biscottis together.

Thank you,

Vanessa

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37 Alexis March 5, 2017

Hi! I’m curious if you’ve played with other flavors. I’d be interested in something in the lemon blueberry field, but didn’t know about the liquid displacement or effect that lemon juice might have on final product. Giving these a shot today!

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38 Marta Durán March 15, 2017

Pictures are fantastic !!!

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