Italian Cantucci from London with Cranberries

20th December 2015

Italian Biscotti (Cantucci))

With Christmas around the corner and the streets full of lights, I feel that it is time to start baking for friends and family. Back in the kitchen, I start flicking through my recipe books. Then, thinking about my Italian and English friends I wonder, why not combine the flavours?  Cranberries (a very English Christmas taste) and Cantucci, the biscotti from Tuscany. My mum would make them with almonds during the festive period. After dinner, we would gather around the fireplace and dip them in the traditional drink ‘Vin Santo’ (Holy Wine) a dessert wine known for its sweetness.

I made my modern version with orange infused cranberries dipped in white and dark chocolate. A feast for the eyes and for the palette!!!

This recipe makes approximately 25 biscuits:
Ingredients
  • 75g orange flavoured dried sweetened cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 240g plain white flour
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 8g baking powder (1 teaspoon)
  • A pinch of cinnamon
  • Zest of half unwaxed orange and lemon
    Ingredients for Cantucci
    Ingredients for Cantucci to which you can add your own twists!
Method
  • Line two or three baking trays with baking paper and preheat the oven to 180’C/Gas 4
  • Sift the flour into a large bowl, add the sugar and baking powder
  • Blend the eggs with olive oil, cinnamon, zest of orange and lemon
  • Stir the dried cranberries with all ingredients until you obtain a uniform mixture. The dough must be soft and elastic
  • Use a spoon to divide the dough into three equal parts and shape each one on the tray like a long baguette (30cm)
  • Bake in the middle of the oven for approximately 15 minutes
  • Remove the tray from the oven and slice along the length of each baguette into strips 1 or 2cm wide
  • Place the biscuits on the tray and return to the oven, this time at 100’C/Gas 1/4 for approximately for 10 minutes until golden-brown
  • Remove them from the oven, allow to cool
  • To melt the chocolate ‘al bagnomaria’:
    • Add water to a saucepan and heat
    • Break the chocolate into squares and add to a heatproof bowl
    • Ensure that the bowl does not touch the base of the saucepan
    • Stir regularly until the chocolate is melted
    • Turn off the heat and start dipping each cantucci into the melted chocolate
  • Position the cantucci in a new tray and once finished put them in the fridge so the chocolate can harden
  • Store the cantucci in a large biscuit tin

Variation: classic cantucci biscuits are made with almonds, but you can try them with pistachio, walnuts, dried cherries, glace’ orange or lemon peel! The chocolate cantucci can be served for afternoon coffee, tea or simply with a glass of cranberry juice. Enjoy!!!

Cantucci
Cranberry Cantucci with white and dark chocolate.

 

 

By ilaria

2 Comments

  1. Reply
    Sara

    Complimenti Ilaria è un bellissimo Blog !♡

    1. Reply
      ilaria

      Grazie Sara per questo bel commento. Direi che mi trasmette molta gioia! Continua a seguirmi ci saranno molte idee.
      Thank you Sara for the lovely comment. It gives me so much happiness! I am really happy with the website so far as well! Keep following the blog, there will be so many more ideas.

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