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Cranberry-White Chocolate Almond Biscotti

I came up with these biscotti well over a year ago and have been making them on a fairly regular basis (well, as regular as biscotti baking can be), yet they have never graced the good ol’ site here. I’ll chalk that up to them disappearing so fast when I actually do make them! They are by far the favorite among my family and friends. They are always the first to go when there are different batches of biscotti to choose from and especially around the holidays, that’s a lot. I mean, there are your plain biscotti for the less adventurous, a more classic anise biscotti, and a savory Parmesan-Black Pepper biscotti, and countless other variations. So as you can see, for a biscotti-loving clan, no compliment could be greater than to actually proclaim a favorite. When my cousin got married last November and I was asked to bake some biscotti for the cookie table, I thought for sure that the Chocolate-Pistachio Biscotti would steal the show. Oh, how wrong I was. My grandma came over wanting to know where the almond cranberry biscotti were, so she could make sure to get some before they were snatched up. I was certain that my Chief Culinary Consultant, who absolutely loves pistachios, would much prefer the chocolate-pistachio variation. Wrong yet again! He thought these were far superior. So there you have it – the true test of a cookie’s worth can be summed up by its popularity at the wedding cookie table and the holiday buffet.

By the way, have you heard of cookie tables at weddings? It seems to be a very regional, Pittsburgh-based tradition which I talked about in the Chocolate-Pistachio Biscotti post. About a month later a story about cookie tables was written in the New York Times; it’s an interesting read, and I encourage you to hop on over and give it a glance!

I have taken to using this recipe as the base for many biscotti variations that I have tested out, and it always stands up well to whatever add-ins and flavors I decide to throw together. Over the holidays I concocted orange-infused biscotti filled with dried dates and walnuts. Mmmm… I need to whip those up again so I can share them with you! As you can see, the recipe is very versatile and you can use it to adapt to whatever flavors you might be feeling at the moment. If made for a holiday or special occasion, these are especially attractive with a drizzle of white chocolate on top.

The biggest tip I have for this recipe is to make sure that, after soaking the cranberries, you drain them well and pat them dry. If they have a lot of excess moisture, it will release during the baking process and cause your biscotti to have too much moisture and not set up quite as properly.

Do you have any regional wedding traditions where you live, like the cookie table?

One year ago: Classic Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Two years ago: Spaghetti & Meatballs

Cranberry-White Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Yield: Makes about 4 dozen

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Ingredients:

½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup boiling water
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
3 large eggs, plus 1 large egg, lightly beaten
1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1½ teaspoons almond extract
½ cup white chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. Place cranberries in a small bowl, and add boiling water. Let stand until plump, about 15 minutes. Drain, pat dry, and set aside. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl; set aside.

2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add 3 eggs, one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts. Add teh flour mixture, and mix on low speed until combined. Mix in the drained cranberries and the white chocolate chips.

3. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Shape each piece into a 16-by-2-inch log, and transfer to prepared baking sheet, about 3 inches apart. With the palm of your hand, flatten logs slightly. Brush beaten egg over the surface of the dough logs, and sprinkle generously with sugar.

4. Bake, rotating sheet halfway through, until logs are slightly firm to the touch, about 25 minutes. Transfer logs on parchment paper to a wire rack to cool slightly, about 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.

5. Place logs on a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise on the diagonal into ½-inch-thick slices. Place a wire rack on a large rimmed baking sheet. Arrange slices, cut sides down, on the rack. Bake until firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Remove pan from oven; let biscotti cool completely on the rack. Biscotti can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

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28 Responses to “Cranberry-White Chocolate Almond Biscotti”

  1. Dave -nibbleanibble on February 3, 2010 at 2:49 am

    Biscotti is pretty amazing. Never tried making it from scratch though.

    Reply

  2. Jelli on February 3, 2010 at 9:07 am

    Cranberry and white chocolate are my favorite mix-ins for scones. I am certain these biscotti must be just delicious!

    Reply

  3. Sarah, Maison Cupcake on February 3, 2010 at 9:44 am

    I’ve never made biscotti either. But by coincidence I posted a white choc and dried red fruit recipe on my blog today – I used dried sour cherries but you could sub easily with cranberry. I love almonds too. Have stumbled you!

    Reply

  4. Maria on February 3, 2010 at 10:30 am

    I am a cranberry fan. I am going to love these!

    Reply

  5. Kristie on February 3, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    These are delish!

    Reply

  6. michelle on February 3, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    I have been wanting to try my hand at biscotti, this looks great!

    Reply

  7. Emily Ziegler on February 3, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    Oh my! These HAVE to be good! Nothing like Biscotti to go with your morning coffee! This has to be fantastic with a warm cup o’ Joe!

    Reply

  8. Tracey on February 3, 2010 at 6:55 pm

    Yum, cranberries and white chocolate? That sounds like a splendid combination to me!!

    Reply

  9. Shauna from Piece of Cake on February 3, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    As a fellow baking blogger, how did I not know of your site before now? Who, what? Okay, well, I’m on board now, sister.

    Great work!

    Reply

  10. Michael Cavinta on February 4, 2010 at 12:08 am

    This is probably one of the best biscottis I have tasted. I tried making this recipe just today and it turned out perfectly! Thank you for sharing this with us. Great pics too. I love pairing this biscotti with a cup of my homemade espresso coffee

    Reply

  11. Megan on February 4, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    I love making oatmeal cookies with cranberries and white chocolate chips and this looks like a great, more sophisticated alternative to that ;) can’t wait to give this recipe a try!

    Reply

  12. Dan on February 6, 2010 at 12:13 am

    These look gorgeous. And I had not seen that cookie table piece — nice!

    Reply

  13. Eliana on February 11, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    These biscotti look wonderful. May have to make them for go allong with VDay breakfast.

    Reply

  14. dana on April 9, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    These were too tempting not to try. My husband is a food snob and could give Gordon Ramsey competition. His reaction to tasting these was they were absolutely perfect! I bow in gratitude. Plus they are fun to make pretty. THANKS.

    Reply

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  20. Laura on December 5, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    Love this idea for holiday baking, but I was wondering if you can freeze biscotti if you want to make ahead?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 6th, 2011 at 12:09 pm

      Hi Laura, Biscotti actually stays for a really long time because they are naturally hard and crunchy. You could make them a few weeks in advance, for sure.

      Reply

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  23. Maxine on December 1, 2013 at 10:19 am

    I loved the sound of these and set about making them as Christmas goodies. They were a complete disaster and were thrown away. The dough was so wet and sticky with no chance of even getting it off my fingers let alone shaping into logs! I converted the weights to grams using a proper table so really don’t understand why it was so wet?! Any comments welcome! I would love to get them right but don’t want to waste more chocolate, ,(didn’t use chips, bought a decent bar and chopped it!)

    Reply

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