Italian Biscotti Recipe aka Twice-Baked Cookies

Biscotti reminds me of my Italian grandmother Philomena. My dad and I would visit her in the nursing home in Philadelphia. I would get a cup of tea for my grandmother and my dad would dunk the biscotti in the tea and feed it to my grandmother. Biscotti are made for dunking! They come in so many flavors and biscotti dipped in chocolate is one of my favorites!

Biscotti were originally made for the Romans to travel with. They were first baked to cook them, then a second time to dry them out, making them ideal for a long journey. The word biscotti is derived from the Latin word for twice, “bis” and baked, “coctum” making them “twice-baked” cookies.

Here’s a family recipe shared by Jeanne Black Friend on The Italian Grandmama’s Guide Community on Facebook. I don’t care for anise so I substitute vanilla. The recipe calls for real alcohol but substitutions are available! This recipe calls for nuts if anyone has allergies or sensitivities.

Homemade biscotti by Jeanne Black Friend.


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter (1/2 lb) melted
  • 1/4 cup of anise seeds, anisette or anise flavoring. (vanilla may be substituted)
  • 3 tbsp whiskey OR 2 tsp vanilla and 2 tbsp water
  • 6 eggs
  • 5 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 2 cups of coursely chopped walnuts or almonds

In a bowl, mix sugar with butter, anisette and whiskey. Beat in eggs. Mix flour with baking powder and stir thoroughly into sugar mixture. Add nuts. COVER and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.

On greased baking sheet, shape dough with hands into flat loaves about 1/2 inch thick, 2 inches wide and as long as the baking sheet.

Place 2 loaves to a pan, spaced wide apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until lightly browned.

Remove from oven and let loaves cool to touch on baking sheet. Then cut on a diagonal slices 1/3 to 3/4 ” thick. Place these slices close together, cut down sides in pan, then bake at 375 degree oven for 15 minutes more or until lightly toasted.

Cool on wire racks. May be stored in airtight containers. Yields about 9 dozen.

For chocolate dipped biscotti, melt 8 oz semi-sweet chocolate (either double-boiler or microwave). TIP: chocolate cools quickly. Try melting 2 oz at a time.

When biscotti cools, dip one end into chocolate. Chopped nuts or colored sprinkles can be added on top of chocolate if desired. TIP: sprinkle over a sink or pan to avoid a mess. Place on waxed paper until it sets.

Hope you enjoy this recipe. Let me know how it goes!

Do you have a family cookie recipe you’d like to share? Please contact me at

Angela DiCicco

The Italian Grandmama

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