Biscotti Rustica


What I like best about this Biscotti Rustica is their sophisticated taste. They taste like a light, nutty, crunchy fruitcake.  The Turbinado sugar, also known as “sugar in the raw,” has large crystals that adhere nicely to egg wash on the tops of the biscotti.

The sugar adds a nice sweet crunch, in the same way that large salt crystals enhance a fresh baked pretzel .

I like to cut these Biscotti on a very lond diagonal (see photo), into long rusks, but if you prefer, cut the logs crosswise to make a larger amount of smaller biscotti.

Tips for making Biscotti

Biscotti Rustica Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 2 Tbs. brandy
  • Zest of 1 lemon about 1 Tbs.
  • 1 Tbs. crystallized ginger, chopped
  • 1  1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 Tbs. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup pine nuts, toasted until golden

For the glaze:

  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten
  • 2 Tbs. turbinado sugar (also sold as Sugar in the Raw in supermarkets).

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the currants, raisins, brandy, lemon zest, and ginger and let stand for 20 min.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or spray with cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Position oven racks in the middle and top of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the flour, granulated sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.
  5. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla.
  6. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined and the dough looks crumbly. Take care not to over mix, particularly if using an electric mixer
  7. Add the fruit mixture and the pine nuts, mixing just until the dough comes together (bring the dough together with your hands if it’s a bit stiff).
  8. Let the dough rest for 15 to 30 min. before shaping.
  9. Cut the dough in half. Using as little flour as possible on the work surface, roll each half into a log that’s 16 inches long and 2 inches wide, working out the air pockets as you go. (If you’re working ahead, wrap the logs in plastic and refrigerate them overnight).
  10. Transfer the logs to the baking sheet, setting them about 3 inches apart and patting the sides to smooth and straighten.
  11. Brush the tops and sides with the beaten egg white and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.
  12.  Place pan into the oven and bake until golden brown and firm in the center, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the sheet to ensure even baking.
  13. Set the sheet on a rack until the logs are cool enough to handle and so the dough won’t compress when you cut it, about 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F. 
  14. With a serrated knife, cut the logs into 1/2-inch-thick slices, cutting on the diagonal so each slice is about 6 inches long.
  15. Lay the slices flat on the baking sheets and return to oven, bake for 20-25 minutes, turning slices over half way through the bake time. Bake until both sides are a rich golden brown.
  16. Set the baking sheets on racks, letting the cookies cool and crisp completely on the sheets.
  17. Store Biscotti Rustica  in air tight container to maintain freshness



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