Nonna's basic biscotti recipe

Published July 14, 2010 4:15PM (EDT)


  • ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons anise seed
  • ¾ cup chopped almonds
  • 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix butter, sugar, eggs, baking powder, vanilla, anise seed and almonds until well blended.
  3. Add in flour gradually and stir. The dough will be sticky, but not difficult to handle.
  4. (I was in the mood for cranberry pistachio biscotti last night, so I added ¾ cup dried cranberries and ¾ cup pistachios to the dough after all the other ingredients were mixed together.)
  5. Make 2 logs about 12 inches long and 4 inches wide.
  6. Bake 40-45 minutes on a baking sheet with sides or in a biscotti pan* (which will hold one log or half the recipe) or another kind of rectangular baking pan. The sides on the pan or sheet are important because they keep the sides of the biscotti from burning.
  7. Remove the loaves from the oven and allow to cool.
  8. LWhen cool, cut each into 1-inch slices.
  9. Place slices back on baking sheet; bake another 10-15 minutes until golden.

It’s important to let the loaves cool before slicing -- it makes a world of difference in the appearance of the biscotti and keeps the slices from breaking apart.

*I have become a biscotti pan convert and use two of them for this particular recipe. The advantage is that the pan contains the logs from spreading and assures a more uniform size.

By Maria Stuart

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