almond cookies (biscotti di prato)

Categories
Nuts/grains
Breads
Desserts
Yield
1 servings
MeasureIngredient
  MAKES ABOUT 2 DOZEN
  Source: Cooking Vegetables
  The Italian Way; Judith
  Barrett
  ISBN 0-02-009078-1; 1994

Prato, just to the northwest of Florence, is famous for its deliciously dry and crunchy, almond-studded biscotti. Although biscotti has come to refer to almost any Italian cookie, biscotti means "twice cooked" and originally referred only to cookies like these that are literally baked twice. These Tuscan biscotti, adapted from Carol Field's version in The Italian Baker, are traditionally served for dipping in Vin Santo, the sweet dessert wine of the region, but I find they are also a wonderful complement to any fruit dessert.

1 cup whole almonds 2¼ cups sifted unbleached white four 1 cup sugar ½ teaspoon baking powder Pinch of salt 3 large eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 tablespoon water

1. Preheat the oven to 350-F.

2. Spread the almonds out on a baking sheet in a single layer and bake them for 7 minutes. Allow to cool while you prepare the biscotti dough.

3. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

If you are using an electric mixer, turn the machine on to the slowest speed and mix the dry ingredients. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. When the dough forms a ball on the beaters, add the vanilla and almonds and continue beating until they are distributed throughout the batter. The batter will be quite sticky. (A hand mixer is probably not strong enough to handle this dough. You can mix the dough by hand.) 4. Scrape the batter out of the bowl onto a heavily floured work surface. Using a pastry scraper or rubber spatula, divide the dough into two equal pieces. Flour your hands and roll each piece of dough into the flour to completely coat it. Form each piece into a log approximately 10 inches long. Place the logs side by side on a well-greased baking sheet. They will spread slightly. Brush with the egg yolk-and-water mixture. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and transfer the logs to a cutting board.

5. Using a large chef's knife, slice the logs crosswise on the diagonal into ½-inch-thick pieces. Place the cut pieces, cut side down, back onto the baking sheet with about 1 inch of space between the pieces. Lower the heat to 325-F and bake for 15 minutes longer.

Cool on racks. These will keep frozen for several months.

Keywords: Italian Baker, Scanned, SJK From : Sallie Krebs, Sat 07 Oct 95 13:30, Area: COOKING From: Sallie Krebs Date: 10-07-95 (20:16) (159) Fido: Cooking

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