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Kitchen Queries

Welcome to Kitchen Queries, where the nigella.com team will answer your cooking or food related questions.  We’d love you to submit some of your recipe problems, dilemmas or queries for us to get our teeth into!

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  • Biscotti - too soft!!

    I have just made some biscotti for the first time and they taste good, but the problem is that they are too soft! Not sure what I did wrong, but it would help if you can help me!

    From the nigella team:

    Biscotti are hard, crunchy cookies as they are usually baked twice - the word biscotti is derived from Italian - "bis" meaning "twice" and "cotti" meaning "cooked". Usually the dough is formed into small loaf shapes (similar to a ciabatta loaf) and baked for around 20 minutes, then cooled slightly before slicing. The slices are then baked for a second time until dry.

    If your biscotti are too soft then it is likely that the cookies were not baked for long enough second time around. If your biscotti slices are around 1/2cm/1/4 inch thick then they should only need around 20 minutes in an oven preheated to 180c/350F to dry out sufficiently. If the slices are thicker then the baking time will need to be extended. We would also suggest that the biscotti are turned over halfway through the second cooking time. If the biscotti are browning too much on the outside and remaining soft on the inside then you will probably need to lower the oven temperature by 20C/50F and cook the biscotti for longer.

    Once the biscotti have had their second cooking you can transfer them to a wire rack and let them cool for 20 minutes before carefully testing one - if the biscotti are too soft you can then return them to the oven to cook for a little longer.  

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