Monday, May 16

Almond Biscotti

A couple years ago, a friend of mine gave me a book called 500 Cookies: The Only Cookie Compendium You'll Ever Need.  Basically the chocolate chip cookies and peanut butter cookies are so good that it's taking me three years to be able to branch away from those two recipes.  So I tried the almond biscotti to make up for the fact that I'm not going to Italy in the foreseeable future.

Almond Biscotti
from 500 Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup superfine sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup whole blanched almonds

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.  Grease and flour two baking sheets. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Whisk the eggs and vanilla together and then stir it into the dry ingredients.  Add the almonds and stir them into the dough.  The dough should be pretty sticky.

greased and floured pan

the dough

Divide the dough into two and form each lump into a log-like thing that's about 2 in. wide and 10 in. long.  Stick the pans in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until the logs are golden.  Remove them from the oven and immediately cut each into 1/2 in. slices.  

biscotti logs pre-oven time

1/2 in. slices after the first baking session

Lay the slices onto one side and bake each side from 10-15 minutes or until they are golden brown.  Let 'em cool.

I had no idea how to deal with the butts
so they kind of burned

First of all, I'm not actually a big fan of biscotti.  Or so I thought.  Other than the fact that they take awhile to make, these cookies are a perfect side for ice cream or just a cup of coffee - assuming you like coffee.  I'm thinking about making some fig biscotti or maybe apricot biscotti later on.  

If you're at school and not back in your mother's well-stock kitchen, you don't really need any unusual baking ingredients other than the superfine sugar and the almonds - neither of which are that expensive.

That said, we did not have almonds.  And now that I'm back in the boonies of Marin and 10 miles from the nearest grocery store, there is no way that I'm going to go get blanched almonds when we have perfectly good raw almonds.  Plus, I discovered that it's not actually that difficult to blanch almonds anyway.  Blanching is the process of immersing whatever in scalding water and then dramatically stopping the cooking process with some cold water.  So put the almonds in a bowl and add boiling water so that it just covers the almonds.  Let it sit for a minute, drain, run the almonds under cold water, and drain them again.  As for greasing and flouring the pan, grease the pans with butter and some wax paper or a paper towel.  To flour the pan, sprinkle about 3 tablespoons worth of flour on the pan and then spread it by tilting the pan and tapping the bottom until the entire pan is coated.

Also, make sure to take the cookies out when they are golden brown.  Even if they are still slightly doughy in the center, they will still harden after you take them out of the oven.


Final note, notice the lack of a sifter in this particular recipe.  Yay!  Something we don't have to ignore!

I could and should put another Italian song up here, but now that I'm home, I have to blast all the classics on the amazing speaker system as opposed to my crappy $10 speakers.  So here's Paul Simon's "Me and Julio Down By The Schoolyard":

Vanstone, Philippa.  500 Cookies: the Only Cookie Compendium You'll Ever Need.  Portland, Me.: Ronnie Sellers Productions, 2005.  Print.


  1. ooh! this is easy! i might make this soon...

  2. You should! Or I will in the fall. They're pretty much gone now anyway. OH. We'll make some involving weird fruits like that Italian cafe we went to in Chelsea or wherever