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Crunchy Biscotti Recipe

The Semifreddis Bakery Cafe on Claremont Ave, Berkeley closed, leaving me without a close, reliable source for their excellent biscotti. And also leaving me with no choice but to attempt replicating their tasty treats at home. I tried half a dozen recipes that I found online, and they all came up short in one way or another.

The most promising recipe I could find came from Madeleine Kamman’s The New Making of a Cook and, over the course of three years, I have tried literally a dozen variations on it. What I like most about the Semifreddis biscuit is how airy it is. By version 12, I had upped the baking powder to double Ms Kamman’s recommendation (and learned to love Clabber Girl) in order to get the loaves to rise significantly during baking.

Early on, with version 2, I decided that my biscotti would have glazed ginger bits. Definitely not part of the original vision, but they add a wonderful dimension, and I’m keeping them. This year, starting with version 10, I tried adding dried cranberries to the mix, and they’re staying too.

A note of caution: these things are dangerously addicting! Make sure you have a plan in place to give away most of the cookies in a batch before you lay them all out on the counter, and have them sitting there looking at you.


Special Equipment


1st Bake

2nd Bake

Chocolate Dip (Optional)