Before I made these cookies, I was not a huge fan of biscotti in general. They seemed too much like old stale crusts of something that wished it were a cookie. Was I wrong or what? The description of this recipe in the Martha Stewart’s Cookies cookbook said that they were sturdy enough for shipping and I wanted to ship some cookies. With the theme of this blog in mind I decided to try out the recipe even though I already had preconceived notions of these cookies.

It was such a pleasant surprise that I liked these cookies that I’ve been having one with my breakfast tea every day this week. Though I must remember my original purpose is to share these with friends and family. It will be difficult to part with them but I know that I can do it because the recipe is really very easy and I’ll make the next batch just for me.

Cranberry Almond Biscotti

(adapted from Martha Stewart’s Cookies)

  • 1 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup amaretto (almond-flavored liqueur), plus more if needed
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs (3 whole, 1 lightly beaten)
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup chopped blanched almonds
  • 3 Tbsp coarse sanding sugar

Preheat oven to 325° F. Heat cranberries and liqueur in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until cranberries have softened, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 2 tablespoons liquid. If liquid equals less than 2 tablespoons, add enough liqueur to make 2 tablespoons.

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. In another large bowl mix together butter and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Mix in 3 whole eggs, one at time. Mix in reserved cranberry liquid, almond extract and vanilla. Reduce to low speed and gradually mix in flour mixture. Stir in cranberries and almonds. If your dough is dry enough you can turn out onto a floured surface to shaped into 2 logs. My dough was much too sticky for that so I shaped the logs right onto the lined baking sheet. Brush logs with beaten egg; sprinkle with the sanding sugar.

Bake 35 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. Transfer to wire racks to cool, about 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300° F.

Transfer logs to a cutting board and use a large knife to cut each log diagonally into 16 to 18 pieces. Place cookies cut side down on the cooking rack and set the cooling racks on your baking sheet. Bake 8 minutes; flip. Bake 8 minutes more. Let cool until crisp.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week or in the freezer for 1-2 months. Serve with hot coffee or tea. The biscotti are best when dipped into a hot beverage.

The rest of my family did not try these because of the inclusion of almonds though I also made some chocolate biscotti that the kids love dipping into a cold glass of milk. I’ll share the recipe for the chocolate biscotti next week. I rate this recipe 5 stars.