If you haven’t heard, I’ve been busy prepping the Chef Charette for my pecha kucha presentation at USC NEXT WEDNESDAY. A pecha kucha presentation is a format created by Japanese architects (who designed the infamous Tsutaya bookstore that I’d love spending time at) to keep presenters straight to the point and presentations flowing so the audience doesn’t get bored….(ingenious, right?) and requires everyone to present at 20 seconds for each slide.
But jeez, my presentation has been a REAL pain in the butt…. because all my vector drawings break and illustrator mis-converted all my lines… so some disappeared or smudged into each other (kill me-as if I haven’t spent enough time on my drawings) and I’m worried about my intricate lines being blurred on the GIANT screen and talking too much that the slide changes and I don’t finish storytelling. I think I’ve spent over 2 hours for days on this presentation for 5 minutes of attention while everyone’s doing dandy stuff like having a lively fun life (without Illustrator/Indesign crashing on them) I’m so relieved to get this finished and hope it pays off……. wish me luck, because presenting in front of a ton of people and being recoded for a video that’s uploaded on Youtube/possibly featured on some USC news article is really terrifying (good for my future? but still terrifying)… I deeply hated presenting at USC (literally right after charette/allnighters) so I’ve never really had positive experiences at USC presentations. THANK GOD I had this biscotti to keep me preoccupied on something else for a few hours.
Biscotti in Italian means “twice baked cookie” because you form this sticky dough into logs, bake them once, slice them into diagonals, flip them over, and bake them again at a lower temperature. I’ve been baking cranberry pistachio biscotti since I was in high school as Christmas cookies for my friends, but decided to try something different by using zingy citrusy Yuzu that I brought back from Japan. And dried blueberries. DRIED. Don’t use fresh blueberries or you’ll repeat my disaster of having sloppy biscotti because of how much juice comes out of fresh blueberries. (imagine a slimy monster on a baking sheet, literally with blueberries as eyes. I’m really embarrassed my Japanese friend baked with me and wasted time/experience such a disaster.)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 cup dried yuzu peels (difficult to find but you can buy them online)
- 1/2 cup dried blueberries (I boil these and drain them so they come out plumper)
Preheat the oven to 300 F and cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix oil with sugar until well blended.
Mix in the vanilla and almond, then beat in the eggs.
Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, and gradually stir it into the egg mixture.
Mix in the yuzu peels and dried blueberries.
Divide the dough and form two logs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 35 minutes in the preheated oven or until the logs are solid and golden brown. Remove from the oven.
Cover the logs with a towel for 10 minutes to prevent them from cooking down too quickly and cracking. Reduce the oven temp to 275.
Cut the logs at a diagonal to about 3/4″ thicknesses. Lay them on their sides on the baking sheet and bake them back at 275 for 8-10 minutes.
Remove them, allow them to cool, and enjoy.