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Saffron Almond Biscotti
based on "Elli's Rusks" from
Savory Way by Deborah Madison, with more butter, added
dried fruit--a more fragile cookie as a result, tending to
when slicing for the 2nd bake, but quite tasty. The rice
flour adds extra crispy crunch to the finished cookies.
Preheat oven to 325°F. You will need lightly greased
cookie sheets if you do not have parchment or silicone liners.
cup unsalted butter
2/3 cup sugar (you will need an
additional 1/3 cup for chopping the fruit)
pinch of saffron threads*
short grain brown rice
OR (if you don't mill your own
substitute 31/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour plus 1/2 cup
rice flour OR 4 cups
unbleached all purpose flour
PLUS 1 teaspoon ground mahleb
PLUS steep a crumbled pinch of saffron in 2 teaspoons of hot
water (add that with the eggs)
1/2 teaspoon salt (omit if
using salted butter)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chopped toasted almonds
or walnuts or your favorite nut
1 cup of a mix of your
preference of dried tart cherries, apricots, nectarines, or
1/3 cup sugar
Whisk together the flours,
mahleb, salt and soda.
In a food processor, whirl the dried fruit and sugar
together until the fruit is very finely chopped.
Cream the butter and sugar together. Beat in the eggs
and saffron water, if using.
Stir in the flour mixture, nuts, and dried fruit. Mix
just holding together smoothly. It should be a stiff
Form the dough into logs, about 1 inch across and as long
baking sheet is wide. Bake 40 minutes, then remove from
turn the oven temp down to 300°F.
Transfer each log carefully to a heat-resistant cutting
slice 1/2 inch thick. Return to the oven laying flat for
15 minutes, remove to a cooling rack, and let them cool
before storing in an airtight container.
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