This is my recipe for traditional Italian biscotti or cantuccini, which are just perfect for a rainy day: they will instantly give you a warm Mediterranean feeling. Originally from the city of Florence, these cookies are very simple to make and a perfect beginner's recipe. And by the by I was told by an Italian that they were simply delicious ;-)
- 250g (2 cups) plain flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 150g (3/4 cup) white sugar
- 1 tbsp almond extract
- 30 g butter
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp Cointreau or alterantively 1 tsp of orange zest
- 200g (2 cups) whole almonds
1. Toast almonds in a pan without oil until they are golden-brown.
2. For the dough mix flour, baking soda, sugar, almond extract, butter, eggs and Cointreau (or orange zest) and knead until it has a smooth but doughy texture. Add the toasted almonds and knead until they are evenly distributed in the dough.
3. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F. Divide the dough in two and form each half into a log of 2cm / 1 inch in diameter. Line a baking tray with baking paper and put the logs in the oven for about 20 minutes.
4. Cut the logs rather diagonally in 1/2 inch wide pieces so you get lengthy cookies. Put the cookies on the tray again, cut sides facing down and bake for another 8 minutes. Flip them over onto the other cut side and bake for yet another 8 minutes.