- Prep Time
- Cook Time
Step By Step
- 2 tbsp olive oil, plus a little extra for greasing
- 100g soft dried figs (or use other dried fruit)
- 200g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 3 UK medium (USA large) eggs, room temperature
- 300g (2 1/2 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp fine salt
- 1 orange
- 100g (scant cup) shelled pistachios
- 1. Grease and line a large baking tray with baking parchment. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan/ gas 4/350°F). Snip or cut the figs into small pieces.
- 2. Put the sugar and eggs in a large bowl, then whisk for a minute or so with a balloon whisk, just until the mixture feels frothy and a little more resistant as you beat. Whisk in the oil.
- 3. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt, then sift them over the egg mixture. Fold together to make a dough. Finely grate the zest from the orange, then work it into the dough along with the nuts and figs, using a spatula.
- 4. Scatter some flour on the work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Split the dough into 2 equal balls, dust each one (and your hands) with a little flour, then shape into a 20–25-cm (8-10 inch) sausage. The dough is quite soft, so be gentle with it, and pat it into shape rather than squeezing it too much. Lift it onto the prepared baking tray.
- 5. Bake for 30 minutes, or until they have risen and turned pale golden. Leave to cool, and in the meantime turn the oven down to 160°C (140°C fan/gas 3/325°F).
- 6. When the dough is firm and cool enough to handle, transfer the biscotti to a board and cut into 1-cm slices. Use a serrated knife and sawing action, as the dough is quite sturdy by this point. Spread the cookies over the baking tray in a single layer. Use a second tray if you want to bake all the cookies at once. GETTING AHEAD The half-baked biscotti can be frozen at this point and baked from frozen when needed. Allow a few more minutes of baking time.
- 7. Return the biscotti to the oven and bake for another 30 minutes, turning them over halfway through, until dry, crisp and just golden. If you are baking 2 trays at once, swap their shelf positions halfway through cooking too.
- 8. Cool the biscotti on a rack, then pack in an airtight container until serving. They will last up to 2 weeks.
SPICED PECAN-CRANBERRY BISCOTTI
Sift 2 teaspoons ground mixed spice (use pumpkin pie spice in the USA) into the flour. Replace the pistachios and figs with pecans and cranberries.
ANISE & ALMOND BISCOTTI
Work in whole blanched almonds instead of the pistachios, and add 1 teaspoon lightly crushed anise or fennel seeds.
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