These are the most delicious pistachio and cranberry biscotti ever. These biscotti are undoubtedly the richer cousins of those Cantucci di Prato (almond and anise cookies) from Tuscany, Italy.
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What are biscotti?
Biscotti are Italian twice-baked cookies. The word biscotto (biscotti’s singular form) means “double cooked.” They are hard, and you may need to dip them in a beverage to “hydrate” while eating them. Italians love to do so in a sweet fortified dessert wine called Vin Santo.
Traditionally, biscotti are made with whole unblanched almonds. They are oblong, dry, and crunchy. The crunchiness is due to the twice-baking process. First, they make a long slab with the dough and bake it. Then, they slice the baked slab and bake those slices.
The double-baking process makes the cookies hard. Because they are dry and hard, biscotti can be stored for long periods and become almost non-perishable goodies. This was very helpful, especially during wars.
Biscotti or cantucci?
Are these biscotti or cantucci? The answer to this question is they are both. According to Italy Bites, cantucci are the most famous Tuscan biscotti. Cantuccio (cantucci’s singular form) means piece or slice. It describes how these biscotti are diagonally sliced.
Festive pistachio and cranberry biscotti
Today’s recipe is not mine. I found it in The Essential New York Times Cookbook, the excellent compilation of classic recipes by Amanda Hesser. The recipe was originally posted in the NYT on November 1st, 1995.
All I did was follow directions, and the result was so exceptional that I decided to share the recipe with you. The only adjustment I made is that I did the first bake of these biscotti at 300°F instead of 350°F to avoid them getting so brown at the bottom. The rest is absolutely by the book.
Having pistachios and dried cranberries together makes these biscotti colorfully festive. I like to give them away as a homemade present any time of the year, especially during the holidays and Valentine’s Day.
How to pair cranberry and pistachio biscotti
These biscotti are perfect with coffee, tea, a glass of milk, and, of course, dipped in wine. I love them with my morning cappuccino.
What you need to make this recipe
The following is a list of utensils and ingredients to make this recipe:
- Glass bowls
- Measuring spoons
- Measuring cups
- Electric mixer
- Silicon spatula
- Parchment paper or silicon pads
- Baking sheets
- Serrated knife
- Cutting board
- Shelled unsalted pistachios
- Dry cranberries
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Almond extract
- All-purpose flour
How to store these biscotti
This recipe yields two dozen biscotti. They can be stored in an airtight container for up to two weeks. In my house, however, they don’t last more than 36 hours, including the eight hours a day we devote to sleep. That’s the problem when something is so good!
Pistachio and cranberry biscotti recipe
Following is the recipe. I hope you like it as much as we do. Thanks for subscribing to my Youtube channel and visiting my Amazon shop.
Pistachio and Cranberry Biscotti
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ Teaspoon sea salt
- 1 Teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 Teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup dry cranberries
- 1 ½ cup shelled unsalted pistachios
- Preheat the oven to 300°F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Whisk the flour, salt, and baking powder in a small bowl.
- With an electric mixer, beat the olive oil with the sugar in another bowl.
- Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix.
- Add the eggs and mix.
- Reduce the speed and add the flour mix.
- Once all the ingredients are well incorporated, slowly beat in the pistachios and the cranberries.
- Divide the dough in half.
- Since the dough will be sticky, rinse your hands with cold water to handle it.
- Form each half of the dough into a lslab about 10 inches long and 2 inches wide.
- Place the slabs on the lined baking sheet, spacing the logs about 4 inches apart.
- Bake for about 35 minutes or until the lslabs are lightly brown.
- Let the slabs cool down for about 10 minutes.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 275°F.
- Place the slabs on a cutting board, and cut them on the diagonal with a serrated knife into ¾-inch-slices.
- Place the slices flat on the baking sheet and bake them for 8-9 minutes.
- Transfer to a rack to cool.
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