Almond biscotti

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Makes around

    forty

Appears in

Old Food

Old Food

By Jill Dupleix

Published 1998

  • About

The first baking gives you fragrant loaves of Italian almond bread. The second baking gives you teeth-achingly crisp, dry-as-bones cantucci di Prato. Serve with an espresso coffee, a glass of Vin Santo or your favourite Italian liqueur for dunking.

Ingredients

  • 100 g ( oz) almonds
  • 250 g (9 oz) plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 240 g ( oz) caster sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 extra egg yolk

Method

Heat oven to 180°C (350°F). Toast almonds in a hot, dry pan until they smell sweet and nutty, then cool and roughly chop.

Combine flour, baking powder, sugar, vanilla extract, whole eggs and egg yolk in a food processor and blend until the mixture leaves the sides and forms a ball.

Turn out onto a lightly floured bench and sprinkle with the almonds. Knead for a minute or two to mix them through. Divide dough in 2 and pat out into log shapes about 25 cm long and 5 cm wide (10 in by 2 in).

Lightly butter a baking tray and arrange logs with room for spreading to the side. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until they are lightly coloured and firm to the touch. Remove tray and allow biscotti to cool for 10 or 15 minutes, while you reduce the oven temperature to 140°C (275°F).

Cut the logs on the diagonal, into 1 cm (½ in) slices or slightly thicker if you like. Arrange on a tray and return to the oven for about 20 to 30 minutes until quite dry, without allowing them to colour. Remove tray and allow to cool on tray until cold, when they will be crisp and dry.

Store in an airtight container.