Our virtual baking session just before Christmas produced more than Orange Chocolate Cake. My friend Leanne had assured me her recipe for biscotti was quick and easy, and she was right. We whipped it up in no time.

Biscotti means “twice-baked” in Italian; don’t let that part intimidate you. It’s simply a matter of cutting the loaves into 1/2″ slices and popping them back into the oven to brown further. The result is wonderfully crunchy but tender. The homemade version bears no resemblance to the dry, rock-like offerings in takeout coffee shops.

I’ve made several batches since that December day. I tell myself that the relatively low butter content and the presence of dried fruits and nuts renders them almost a health food. 🙂 

Leanne’s basic biscotti recipe is very versatile and called for almonds rather than pistachios. She drizzled chocolate over the cooled, sliced biscuits. Decadent!. 


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Cranberry, Pistachio & Orange Biscotti

Crisp but tender, these delicious biscotti are packed full of chewy cranberries and salty pistachios, with just a hint of orange. 


  • 90g or 1/3 c unsalted butter
  • 240 g or 2 c all-purpose flour, divided
  • 133 g or 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 133 g or 1 1/2 c pistachios, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp orange zest (zest from about 1/3 a large orange)
  • 50 g or 1/3 c dried cranberries


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Have all ingredients at room temperature. 
  2. In a medium bowl, combine half the flour with the sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add the flour mixture, eggs and vanilla. Beat until creamy and smooth (about 2 minutes). Add the remaining flour, nuts, orange zest and cranberries. beat until combined (about 1 minute). 
  4. Flour your hands. Divide the dough in half, shaping each half into a log about 9″ by 3″. Place the logs about 4″ apart on the rimmed baking sheet. 
  5. Bake until golden (about 25 minutes). Remove the logs to a cooling rack and let cool (about 30 minutes). Retain the baking sheet and parchment. Lower the oven temperature to 325ªF.
  6. Using a serrated knife, cut each log diagonally into slices about 1/2″ thick. Place slices ay slices back on the baking sheet and bake until light brown (about 10 minutes). Turn the slices over and return to the oven until crisp and dry (about 8 to 10 minutes) 
Cool on wire rack.
Place cooled cookies on waxed paper. In a heavy small saucepan heat chocolate chips and shortening over low heat until melted, stirring occasionally With a spoon drizzle chocolate atop cookies or dip 1/2 into melted chocolate. For a design on dipped cookies, run a fork or tip of a knife through chocolate while still soft. Let chocolate set up before serving. Makes about 30 slices.


This recipe is very versatile. Feel free to substitute almonds or hazelnuts for the pistachios. or lemon zest for the orange. You can leave out the fruit entirely and drizzle chocolate over the cooled biscuits.

  • Author: Helen Kain