Biscotti di Prato


Biscotti di Prato, also known as cantuccini, traditional Tuscan crunchy twice-baked almond biscuits, originally from the Italian city Prato. 

In Italy, these cookies are traditionally served at the end of a meal with a glass of Vin Santo, which is a golden-yellow Tuscan dessert wine.  It is as if these were made for each other so it is no wonder that they are usually served together.

In England this wonderful cookie is more likely to be eaten with a steaming cup of tea.  In the US the first choice for dipping is more likely to be a hot cup of coffee or a steaming cappuccino. 

Toasting the almonds and adding almond extract, really brings out the almond flavor.

With Wine? With Coffee? I doesn't matter how you like them, they are subtly delicious.


Biscotti di Prato Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole unblanched almonds
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 7/8 cup granulated sugar
  • Dash of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions:

  1. Position one of your oven racks in the center of your oven and preheat 350°F
  2. Place nuts on a baking sheet and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool and cut in halves or thirds.
  3. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper or grease and flour baking sheet, set aside
  4. Beat the eggs, vanilla and almond extract together
  5. In a mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, baking soda and salt, blend until mixed.   Add the egg mixture and mix until blended, about a minute.
  6. Sift flour, sugar, dash of salt and baking soda together three times, or place in bowl and wish together for one minute, make a well in the center.  Divide dough in half.
  7.  On prepared baking sheet, pat dough into two logs about ½ inch thick, 1 ½ inches thick and 12 inches long.
  8. Place sheet in oven and back for 50 minutes or until golden brown.
  9.  Transfer from pan to cooling rack and cool for 5 minutes. Reduce oven to 275°F
  10.  Place on cutting board and slice ½ inch think on diagonal with serrated knife.
  11.  Lay slices flat on the baking sheet and return to oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until crisp, turning over half way through
  12.  Allow to cool, then store in airtight container to keep fresh.



To make these into a chocolate glazed version.

  •  Coarsely choppy 3 ounces of good semisweet chocolate and place in a double boiler. 

Note: I have used Barry Callebaut dark chocolate chunks, with great success and outstanding flavor.  If you would like to try you can purchase for Olive Nation.


Barry Callebaut 70102 dark Choc chunks 1 lb
from: OliveNation
  • Heat until chocolate melts, Stir to blend.  
  • With a spatula apread over the entire top surface of cookie.
  • Let cool at room teperature until set.

For more on melting and tempering chocolate click here!

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