Amaretto Biscotti with Cranberries and Pistachio

I’m so sorry I’ve been MIA folks! There has been a lot going on in my life and I haven’t even had the desire to cook in the last few months, let alone take photos and write up a proper blog post. This past Saturday was the first time in a while that I felt like baking something, so maybe that’s a good sign. I came across this biscotti recipe in the current issue of Real Simple magazine and immediately ripped the page out and ran out to buy the ingredients! I’m so glad I did, too: baking cheered me up immediately and having a big stack of delicious biscotti didn’t hurt, either. My coworkers appreciated the bounty, too!

The recipe in the magazine actually calls for Almond extract, not Amaretto, but I had Amaretto on hand and I thought that sounded like a nice twist. The flavor is really subtle and delicious!

I’ve never made biscotti before but I knew the basic idea: you bake a big cookie, then slice it up and bake the slices again. As my coworker said to me when I brought them in, “aren’t biscotti basically like dried-out cookies?”

Next time I make biscotti I plan to make each “log” bigger so that the individual cookies are longer once they’re sliced. These came out a bit on the stumpy side and it’s kind of awkward to dip them in coffee (which is the best part of a biscotti IMO!).

After slicing the logs, you lay out all the cookies in a single layer on the same sheet:

Don’t they look awesome like this? I had a lot of fun photographing them and I think they would make an awesome print! I lucked out when it came time to take these pictures, there was tons of light streaming into the window so all the pictures came out great.

How’s this one for a print?

Next time I make these I’ll bake them for a bit less time after slicing so that they don’t end up so dark. The texture and flavor is totally fine even though they’re dark, they’re just not as pretty! I wanted the green of the pistachios to come through (the way it does in these pictures) but they came out so dark that you can’t even tell what’s in them. That is, until you bite into one! I lucked out with this batch of pistachios from Trader Joe’s, they’re some of the most delicious pistachios I’ve ever tasted! I keep sneaking a handful of the leftovers whenever I go through the kitchen . . .

Amaretto Biscotti with Cranberries and Pistachio
Adapted (slightly!) from November 2009 issue of Real Simple

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp Amaretto
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup shelled roasted (non-salted) pistachios

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine first 3 ingredients in a bowl and set aside. In stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add Amaretto. Add flour mixture and mix only until just incorporated. Fold in cranberries and pistachios.

Divide the dough in half and shape each piece into a log about 2″ thick and 10″ long. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving a few inches between logs (they will spread!). Bake for 22-25 minutes, until just gold around edges. Remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes.

Lower oven to 300 degrees. Slice logs into 1/2 inch slices using a serrated knife. Be deliberate and go slow so that you don’t break the cookies! Lay out cookies in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake until dry and crisp, 15 to 18 minutes per side (I did 15 minutes per side and mine came out quite dark, keep an eye on them if you want them less brown!).

Enjoy with a nice cappuccino!

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