Cantucci

cantucci

These little crispy almond cookies are often dipped in a sweet wine called Vin Santo for a light, tasty dessert. Biscotti have taken the world by storm. These subtly sweet, crisp cookies can be found in different countries around the globe, although they can be traced back to Italy as far back as the fourteenth century. In fact it is said Christopher Columbus carried these cookies on his voyages because they were so sturdy, and their dryness prevented the problem of spoilage. The name biscotti can be translated as twice cooked which indeed describes how these tasty cookies are made. By baking them twice, they lose any excess moisture, which ensures a crisp, dry cookie perfect for dipping. Since biscotti are not very sweet, they are a perfect snack at any time of the day, whether they are enjoyed with a cup of coffee in the morning or dipped into a sweet dessert wine after dinner.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2011

Cantucci

Traditional Tuscan almond biscotti made to dip into sweet wine.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Whole, Raw Almonds
  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 ½ Teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1/8 Teaspoons Salt
  • ½ Teaspoons Cinnamon
  • 6 Tablespoons Butter Softened
  • 2/3 Cup of Confectioners Sugar
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 Tbs. Almond Extract

Directions:

  1. Place the almonds in a preheated 325-degree F. oven and toast the almonds just until they begin to take on color.
  2. Cool, and coarsely chop.
  3. Mix together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt, and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together the butter and powdered sugar, then next add the almonds, the eggs and extract.
  5. Add the dry ingredients and continue mixing until well blended.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, divide the dough in half, and form two loaves about 9 inches long and 2 1/2 inches wide and place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  7. Bake for about 30 minutes or until they are slightly golden brown.
  8. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then using a serrated knife cut into ½ inch slices.
  9. Place these slices back on the baking sheet, and cook an additional 5-10 minutes or until the cookies are golden in color and dry.
  10. Cool, and store in an airtight container.