Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti bring fall to your cookie jar. The season’s most popular flavor, pumpkin spice, pairs deliciously with sweet-tart bits of cranberry in this crunchy cookie.
Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti are my contribution to the 2017 Virtual Pumpkin Party, orchestrated by Sara at Cake Over Steak. There are about 100 bloggers participating in the party this year with all kinds of pumpkin recipes, both savory and sweet.
If you thought pumpkin was mainly used in pies and lattes, you will be amazed at the culinary creativity in the recipes presented. All pumpkin lovers should be sure to peruse the whole list. You can find links to all of the recipes on Sara’s Virtual Pumpkin Party page.
I am a biscotti enthusiast. Biscotti are, quite simply, the best care package cookie around. They ship well and generally stay fresh for ages.
Biscotti made with fruit jams or butters, like Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti or Fig Jam Biscotti stay fresh for up to 2 weeks. Drier biscotti, like Chocolate Espresso or Coconut, can stay fresh for a month.
Biscotti originated as an Italian cookie, traditionally baked twice to extreme crunchiness meant to withstand dunking in sweet wine. Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti are not as hard as traditional biscotti, though still crunchy, making dunking optional.
These biscotti are made with pumpkin butter, not pumpkin puree. Pumpkin butter is made by combining pumpkin puree, spices, and sweeteners and cooking to reduce the liquid and condense the flavor.
Pumpkin butter is responsible for the beautiful orange-golden color, spiced flavor, and crunchy texture of these Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti. You can buy pumpkin butter ready-made or easily make it yourself.
I very slightly adapted a pumpkin butter recipe from Tricia, at Saving Room for Dessert, to use in these biscotti.
Though I am prone to excessive biscotti decorating, pumpkin and cranberries make these biscotti so colorful on their own, I restrained myself.
A simple dip in melted white and dark chocolate gives the cookies an elegant finish and takes the taste up another notch.
With the temperatures dropping and fall in full swing, warming drinks with biscotti are an ideal snack. Bake a batch of Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti for your own cookie jar, for gift giving, or to add a bit of fall to your next care package.
Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup pumpkin butter purchased or homemade (See recipe below)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup dried cranberries Craisins, chopped
- ½ cup about 75g white melting chocolate
- ½ cup about 75g dark melting chocolate
- FOR HOMEMADE PUMPKIN BUTTER OPTIONAL
- 1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
- 1 cup unsweetened apple juice
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- FOR HOMEMADE PUMPKIN BUTTER:
- In a medium saucepan on medium heat, stir together all ingredients and bring to a boil.
- Lower the heat to simmer. Use a pan lid to partially cover the pan to contain splatter. Cook until reduced by ½ for about 30 minutes.
- Stir frequently, especially toward the end of cooking to prevent the pumpkin butter from sticking to the bottom of the pan and burning.
- Allow to cool before using in biscotti batter.
- WHEN READY TO BAKE:
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt.
- Beat in the egg, vanilla, and pumpkin butter.
- Gradually add the flour and mix until smooth.
- Stir in dried cranberries.
- Divide the dough in half, and shape each half into a 10" x 2 1/2" log. The logs should be about 4” apart on the baking sheet.
- Bake for 25 minutes. Remove it from the oven and cool for 5 minutes.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
- Move the logs onto a cutting board. Use a sharp serrated knife to cut the logs crosswise into 1/2" to 3/4" slices.
- Stand the sliced biscotti back on the baking sheet. Return the biscotti to the oven, and bake them about 25-30 minutes more, until the edges are turning golden.
- Remove from the oven and cool completely on wire racks.
- Melt the chocolate in a small bowl for 1 minute at 50%power. Stir. If not completely melted, return to the microwave and zap for 10 second intervals until melted.
- Line a baking sheet that fits in your refrigerator with wax paper. Dip the bottoms of the biscotti in the melted chocolate and place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Refrigerate the dipped biscotti for about 10 minutes or until the chocolate is set.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature, layers separated with wax paper, for at least 2-3 weeks. The biscotti are most crisp the first week after baking.