Biscotti are a twice-baked Italian cookie, invented hundreds of years ago, and are perfect to take on long journeys because they are dried, have a long life, and are nutritious.
Typical ingredients in a biscotti are: flour, eggs, sugar, and some form of nuts.
The biscotti are first baked as a loaf, cooled, then sliced and baked again to completely de-hydrate and crisp them up.
This particular biscotti is a gem easily missed in AWW Easy Entertainment (I think it's out of print) because it is literally a three-inch article amongst many others that over-shadow it on the same page.
It intrigued me in its strange use of typical ingredients, and ever since it has been a staple in my kitchen.
(The pistachio biscotti are served in the photo above with Pinenut torts.)
5 egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup flour, sifted
1 cup peeled raw pistachio kernels
Preheat oven to 380F.
Butter and flour an loaf tin; set aside.
Whisk egg whites with a pinch of salt to soft peaks.
Gradually add the sugar and vanilla to the egg whites as you are whisking until the sugar is dissolved and you have medium firm peaks.
Add the sifted flour and pistachio kernels to the egg whites and fold in gently until incorporated.
Turn out the formed batter into the prepared loaf tin; smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake for 30 for 40 minutes until golden around the edges and firm to the touch in the center.
Let cool 5 minutes in the pan before turning out on a wire rack to completely cool (a couple of hours).
When the loaf has completely cooled, wrap firmly in a sheet of foil and store in a cool place for one or preferably two days.
After the two days, unwrap the load and cut into half-centimeter thick slices.
Preheat oven to 300F.
Arrange slices in a single layer on a baking sheet or two.
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, turning the slices over half-way through for even browning.
Note that some slices might brown faster than others, so keep a constant eye on them from 35 minutes upwards, and remove the browned slices as they are done.
Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before storing them in an air-tight container.
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