These cantuccini are filled with whole unblanched almonds. Look at this pile!
The dough first seems very dry and crumbly, but after a minute or two of hand-kneading, the dough comes together.
The dough is divided in two and formed into logs.
After the first baking the logs are set aside to cool completely.
Then the baked dough is cut into diagonal slices and baked again. (This is a sad picture, seeming as if my cantuccini had no color to them! In fact they were golden brown.)
After the second baking and cooling, the biscotti and ready to munch! So crunchy and delicious.
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups unblanched whole almonds
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
Put the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl and stir with a rubber spatula to mix. Stir in the almonds.
Whisk the eggs and vanilla together in a small bowl, then stir them into the flour mixture. The dough may seem dry at this point, but it will come together as it is kneaded.
Turn the dough out into a lightly floured work surface and knead, folding it over onto itself until it is smooth, 1-2 minutes. Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a 12 inch long log. Gently press down on the logs to flatten them until they are about 2 inches wide and 1 inch high. Transfer them to the prepared pan.
First baking: Bake the logs for about 30 minutes, or until they are slightly risen and firm to the touch. Slide the logs, parchment paper and all, off the baking sheet and onto a cooling rack. The logs must be completely cool before you can continue with the recipe. Since they take about about 30 minutes to cool, you can either turn off the oven or leave it on for the next step. You can bake the biscotti up to this point several days ahead. Wrap the logs well in plastic and continue when its convenient.
Second baking: When the logs have cooled completely, preheat the oven to 350, if necessary. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Working with a sharp serrated knife, cut the cooled logs diagonally into 1/4 inch thick slices. Place the sliced cookies cut side down on the pans and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the biscotti and crisp and golden. Cool on the pans.
Storing: These biscotti will keep for up to a month in an airtight tin or plastic container.
*With a nod to my Norwegian heritage, I substituted cardamom for the cinnamon.
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