white chocolate cranberry biscotti

I told you all about my holiday cookie boxes — now I get to tell you about all of the goodies that I stuffed inside of them.  Get ready for an overload of cookie recipes in the next few days (I owe it to you after being MIA for the last two weeks). 

In the past, I would have never ordered biscotti at a coffee shop.  Why would I choose a hard, crunchy cookie wrapped in plastic when I could have a warm slice of banana bread, or a delicious   slice of blueberry coffee cake? This recipe has entirely changed my views on biscotti. These are not the brick-like, tooth-breaking, stale biscotti that may come to mind. These are buttery, vanilla-y, and pure heaven when sitting alongside a dark, rich cup of coffee.

I made these for my friend Grace who loves the blog Cupcakes and Cashmere.  Emily Schuman (the genius behind Cupcakes and Cashmere) wrote that these were one of her favorite things to have with afternoon tea.  She makes hers with almonds and orange liqueur.  To make mine more festive for the holidays, I substituted white chocolate and cranberries for the orange zest and liqueur.  Grace, just like Emily Schuman, has a great sense of style. I am always jealous of her classic, stylish ensembles.  She loves J. Crew, and Tory Burch.  She even has a job at a classy, menswear store in the area.  Biscotti are the classiest of cookies (even the name “biscotti” sounds so sophisticated!) — so I knew they would be just perfect for my amazing, stylish friend, Grace. Watch out, because she just may be the next “Cupcakes and Cashmere” (she even has Emily’s long blonde hair!).

With love,

White Chocolate Cranberry Biscotti
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup white chocolate chips
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1 cup whole almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped or sliced almonds

1 large egg white

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Line baking
sheet with parchment paper. Sift flour, baking powder and salt into
medium bowl. Mix sugar, melted butter, 3 eggs, and vanilla extract in large bowl. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and stir
with wooden spoon until well blended. Mix in almonds, white chocolate chips, and cranberries.

Divide dough in half. Using floured hands, shape each dough half into
13 1/2-inch-long, 2 1/2-inch-wide log. Transfer both logs to prepared
baking sheet, spacing apart. Whisk egg white in small bowl until foamy;
brush over top and sides of each dough log.

Bake logs until golden brown (logs will spread), about 30 minutes.
Cool logs completely on sheet on rack, about 25 minutes. Maintain oven

Transfer logs to work surface; discard parchment paper. Using
serrated knife, cut logs on diagonal into 1/2-inch-wide slices. Arrange
slices, cut side down, on same baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes. Turn
biscotti over; bake until just beginning to color, about 8 minutes.
Transfer to rack and cool.

Do ahead: Can be prepared one week ahead, though mine have kept even longer. Store in airtight container at room temperature.

Starbucks’ Vanilla Almond Biscotti

Today I am super excited to share with all of you one of the lovely friends that I have made through my adventures writing Cannella Vita. One of my favorite things about food blogging (besides getting all these baked goodies) is meeting and connecting with so many other people who share my passion for food. Izy is a lovely teenage food blogger (just like myself) from England. Her emails always make me smile, and all of her pictures always take my breath away. Without further ado, here’s Izy!
Hiya everyone! I’m
Izy, another teen blogger, and I blog over at Top With Cinnamon. I’m
super excited to share this recipe with you today, here on Erica’s
amazing blog 🙂
I love crunchy, crispy
food the most! Fresh grapes from the fridge while they’re crisp and
juicy, cereal (no milk on mine, I don’t want no soggy cereal) and
biscotti. Not ones which should come with a tooth hazard warning, but
crunchy and crumbly with creamy almonds and a sugar-speckled crust (I’m
seriously surprised I didn’t end up sprinkling cinnamon-sugar onto this
dough before baking it).
Along with hot coffee or tea, they are a perfect mid-morning snack!

it’s fact time: ‘Biscotti’ literally means ‘twice baked’- ‘bi’ meaning
two and ‘scotti’ (think of the word scorch) meaning baked. Hooray for
random facts, they make your friends sigh in exasperation amazement at
your unexpected knowledge-bombs.

Vanilla Almond Biscotti (Starbucks Copycat)

2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour (I used half a.p and half whole wheat)
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup roughly chopped almonds
3 tbsp butter, cut into small cubes
1 egg plus 1 egg white
3 tbsp buttermilk
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie tray with baking paper.

Put the first 6 ingredients into a large bowl. Cut the butter into
the dry ingredients with a pastry blender or rub it in with your fingers
(like when making pie dough or crumb topping). Set aside 2 tbsp of the
chopped almonds, and add the rest into the bowl with the flour mixture.

In a small jug / bowl, whisk together the egg, egg white, buttermilk
and vanilla extract. Pour this into the bowl  with the flour mixture
and stir together gently until the mixture comes together. You may need
to use your hands to finish mixing it by lightly kneading the dough a
few times.

Place the dough on the lined cookie tray and shape into a log
roughly 10″ long, 5″ wide then flatten it slightly to 1″ thick. Sprinkle
on the reserved chopped almonds and bake for 30-35 minutes until golden
brown on top. Let it cool on a wire rack until it’s cool enough to
handle. Turn the oven down to 325 degrees F.

Slice the loaf across its width using a sharp
knife or a serrated bread knife, into 3/4″ thick slices. Place the
biscotti cut side down back onto the cookie tray. Bake them again for 10
minutes, then flip them over and bake for a further 10 minutes. Remove
them to a wire rack and let them dry out overnight in a dry place.