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This recipe is part of Alice Medrich's Cookies and Brownies.

Cornmeal and Fruit Biscotti

Cornmeal and Fruit Biscotti

Our old Italian plum tree's seen more than 50 summers, and its winter has finally arrived. A couple of miserable windstorms and snowstorms have robbed the tree of its productive branches, and last year's crop was the last we got from the old girl. We'd had bags of frozen, cooked plums all year, but they finally ran out earlier this year. We were left with a small bag of plums I'd dehydrated and frozen, hoping to make them last a little longer.

Those plums were perfect in this cornmeal biscotti, the last gift from that venerable but gnarly stump in the backyard. I'd made biscotti before, but this recipe from Cookies and Brownies really honored that last fruit with an amazing and complex flavor and texture.

A few notes on this recipe:

  • Double the recipe. It's that good. It's not overly sweet, and the cornmeal gives it a toothiness that contrasts with the chewy dried fruit.
  • The dried fruit may stick to the parchment a little during the second bake, but if you let it cool a little more on the pan, it will come off with a gentle tug.

Cornmeal and Fruit Biscotti
1 c AP flour
1 c cornmeal
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 T unsalted butter, softened
1 c sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 c raisins or dried cherries, cranberries, blueberries, or chopped dried apricots

Cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper or greased and floured

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Position a rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. Combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and mix together thoroughly with a whisk or fork. Set aside.
  3. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until blended.
  4. Add the eggs, vanilla, and lemon zest, and beat until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the flour mixture, stirring until all of the ingredients are moistened.
  6. Add the raisins, mixing with your hands if necessary.
  7. Shape the dough into a 12 x 2-inch log and place it on the cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for 35 - 40 minutes, or until lightly browned and cracked on top.
  9. Cool for 5 - 10 minutes.
  10. Transfer the loaf carefully to a cutting board.
  11. Using a long serrated knife, cut the loaf on the diagonal into slices about 3/8" wide.
  12. Lay the slices, cut side down, on the cookie sheet.
  13. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until the cookies are barely beginning to brown at the edges.
  14. Cool the cookies completely before stacking or storing.

Makes about 30 biscotti

May be stored, airtight, for at least 2 weeks

This recipe comes from Alice Medrich's Cookies and Brownies, and is available on Purple House Dirt with permission from the author.


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