Cantucci is the Italian name for what in America you call Biscotti. Although if you ask for Biscotti in any bakery or restaurant in Italy, they will look at you puzzled, waiting for more details. Biscotti is the literal translation of "cookies" in Italy.
The traditional Cantucci have almonds and honey in the dough. Although nowadays you can find many more varieties: with chocolate, pistachio, orange and more.
My mom gave me this recipe and I decided to keep it just as simple as it is, without adding many spices or dried fruits as I saw in many recipes. Simple, Traditional, Delicious.
How to eat Cantucci
The traditional Cantucci must be dipped in Tuscan Vin Santo. Vin Santo (literally "Holy Wine") is a traditional sweet wine liqueur. Restaurants usually serve "Cantucci e Vin Santo" at the end of the meal as dessert. Here you can read more information about Vin Santo.
"Cantucci e Vin Santo" can be found listed as dessert is many Tuscan trattorias and restaurants. It's part of our tradition and I still love it, especially after a big meal.
Since I don't have any Vin Santo here, I suggest dipping the Cantucci in hot Tea. By themselves, they are lovely if you underbake them to keep them soft or if you like crunchy cookies. But in general, they're great for dipping!
How to make Biscotti
Biscotti are one of the easiest cookies to make: you only need one bowl, they don't require chilling and the ingredients don't require any special attention.
Just gather all the ingredients, add the eggs and the sugar in a bowl and whisk well until light and foamy. Then add add all the remaining ingredients and mix well with a spoon.
The dough will be very sticky and difficult to handle, so it's very important to keep your hands wet so the dough will stick as less as possible.
Make 2-3 loaves in a lined baking sheet, then brush the top with water to make it smooth and sprinkle some sugar on top. Bake in a preheated oven at 375°F/180°C for about 20 minutes.
FAQ & Tips
They are exactly the same! Biscotti is the American name while Cantucci is the Italian name of this particular cookie. The pecurliarity of this cookie is that is baked into loaves and then cut into single cookies and then baked a second time.
Biscotti in Italian is the literal translation of Cookies. It's the generic name we use to identify all types of cookies, but the origin of this name comes from the word Bis-Cotti which means "baked twice". Which, of course, is also the focus point of Biscotti cookies.
Yes, after the first bake, you can cut and cool down the biscotti and you can then freeze them for up to 6 months. When you want to eat them again, take them out of the freezer and bake in the preheated oven at 375°F/180°C for about 15 minutes.
Nothing is worse than stale and gummy cookies. The most important thing in storing Cantucci is to avoid humidity. The best storage is a tin cookie box or a glass jar and then kept in a cool and dry spot.
If you like this recipe, try also these other Italian cookies:
"Cantucci" - Traditional Tuscan Biscotti
- 3 ½ cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 ¾ cups Sugar
- 4 Eggs
- 2 cups Almonds, unpeeled
- 2 ½ tablespoon Honey
- 1 tablespoon Baking Powder
- Preheat the oven to 375°F / 180°C.
- In a large bowl, whisk energetically the 4 eggs with the sugar until they become light and foamy.
- Add the almonds, the honey, the baking powder and the flour. Mix well with a spoon until you get a sticky dough.
- Wet your hands with water and knead the dough to make 2 or 3 loaves large about 2-3 inches (6-8 cm) and about 1 inch (3 cm) thick for the whole length of your baking sheet.
- Brush the top of the loaves with water to make them smooth and shiny, then sprinkle some sugar on top.
- Bake in pre-heated oven for about 20 minutes or until golden on top.
- Let them cool for a few minutes then cut off slices about ¾ inch (2 cm) thick. Now place the Cantucci again on the baking tray with the cut side facing up and bake again for a few more minutes to make them crunchy.
- If you want your Cantucci to be a little bit softer, you can skip the second bake.
- Let them cool completely before serving!
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.