Cantucci - better known in America as Biscotti - are crunchy almond cookies from Tuscany. Biscotti literally means twice (bis) cooked (cotti). 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.
2 cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, sifted
3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (or if you have it: 1 teaspoon amaretto)
4.4 ounces raw unpeeled almonds
Preheat the oven to 356 degrees F
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
Add the eggs, honey, orange zest, amaretto 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 12 inch long, and 2 inch wide. Wet your hands, it will be easier to shape the dough.
Place the logs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or with a silicone mat.
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 1/2 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.
Store them in a sealed container for several weeks.
NOTES The dough is rather crumbly, but don’t be alarmed. Keep kneading and I promise it will become softer and stickier.