Black olives have a briny sweetness that effortlessly straddles the line between sweet and savory. These biscotti sit squarely across the same line, with a serious hit of rosemary, subtle blood orange zest, and extra virgin olive oil to highlight the olives' unique flavor. Semolina flour provides a crunchy contrast and keeps the texture pleasingly crumbly, which is great for anyone who's not into rock-hard biscotti.
This recipe is incredibly easy to make. Chop, mix, bake, slice and bake again. Gorgeous with espresso or even a particularly dark and bitter black tea.
Note: You can substitute regular orange, tangerine, or even lemon zest if you wish for the blood orange zest. I particularly like the bitter notes and extra thin skin and oil of a blood orange, though. If you have a hard time finding semolina, use cornmeal. It will provide a similar crunch.
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- Yield:makes about 20 biscotti
- Active time: 20 minutes
- Total time:2 hours
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup semolina flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup black olives
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated blood orange zest (or regular orange zest)
- 2 eggs
In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, semolina, baking powder, salt, and rosemary. Set aside. If your olives are packed in brine, rinse and drain them. If they are packed in oil, drain the oil. Finely chop olives and add to dry mixture.
In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, oil, zest and eggs. Scrape into dry mixture and fold together until dough is fully mixed. Pat into a log about 12 inches long and nearly 3 inches wide, wrap in plastic and chill at least half an hour (this will discourage the dough spreading in the oven).
Meanwhile, place a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat oven to 350°F. When ready to bake, place dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat, patting into an even rectangle. Place in center of oven and bake for 20 minutes, then rotate and bake another 10 minutes. To test for doneness, press lightly in center of biscotti loaf. Loaf is done when center is firm and springs back to the touch. Remove from oven and allow to cool fully.
Turn oven down to 300°F. Using a serrated bread knife, gently slice cooled biscotti into 1/2 inch slices. Lay slices out on parchment or silicone-lined baking sheet and bake for 7 minutes. Touch tops of slices; if they're still soft on the surface, bake another 2-4 minutes. Once the tops are crisp, remove baking sheet from oven, flip slices and bake until biscotti is crisp throughout, another 3 to 5 minutes. Allow to cool completely before storing in airtight containers.