Happy Sunday ladies and gents,
Christmas is around the corner and if you don’t know what to give to your friends or family, these Italian cookies make a fantastic sweet gift. You can easily store them for several days in a tin container.
Cantucci or Biscotti are traditional crunchy almond cookies from Tuscany.
They are very popular in Italy and you can find them everywhere. My favourite was at the end of a meal to dip them in a glass of Tuscan dessert wine (vin santo). OMG, so yummy!
These almond cookies are very easy to make: you shape the dough into a log and bake it. Then slice the log with a sharp, serrated knife and bake the cookies again. It’s during this step that cantucci dry out and become crispy and golden.
Today I decided to make the original one, but next time I will try to make them with chocolate chips, hazelnuts, pistachios or dried fruits. The possibilities are endless.
This cantucci recipe is a perfect solution for gift giving. But I would be hugely surprised if you didn’t sneak a few while you’re wrapping them up!
Enjoy this authentic Italian recipe.
- 500g all-purpose flour, sifted
- 280g granulated sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 4 eggs + 1 yolk
- 250g raw, unpeeled almonds
- 100g unsalted butter
- pitch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Toast the almonds in the oven for 3-4 minutes and leave them to cool down (watch them carefully as they can burn quickly).
- In a large bowl combine the eggs, sugar and salt and mix with an electric mixer until you get a creamy and fluffy mixture.
- Add the butter and the flour and mix all the ingredients.
- Once you have a crumbly, soft mixture, add the almonds.
- Transfer the dough on a lightly floured surface and roll it into 2 logs that are approximately 30 cm (12 inch) long, and 5 cm (2 inch) wide.
- Place the logs on a baking sheet lined with baking paper.
- Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown.
- Remove the logs from the oven and let them cool for about 10 minutes before slicing.
- Place a log on a cutting board and using a sharp, serrated knife, cut it diagonally into 1.5 cm (1/2 inch) slices.
- Put the cookies back on the baking sheet and bake them for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove the cantucci from the oven and let them cool on a wire rack. (If you would like you can drizzle some dark chocolate)
- Store them in a sealed container for several weeks.