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Cantucci or biscotti? Welcome to cookie decoding 101.
When it comes to Italian cookies, we all know what biscotti is - the crumbly, crunchy cookies famous for getting dunked into coffee and espresso. They're so popular in the US in the modern day, they're a staple in just about every grocery store cookie section. It wasn't until we stocked up our store with cantucci cookies that we realized a distinction might need to get made - what's the difference between cantucci vs biscotti?
The answer requires a bit of context: in Italy, all cookies are called "biscotti" - it's the direct translation of the word "cookies". In a world where every single cookie is called a biscotto (the singular form of the word) there needs to be a word for what we know to be biscotti. That word is - yes, you guessed it - cantucci!
So the only real difference between cantucci and biscotti is a linguistic one - but there are some cultural differences with how this divine little cookie is enjoyed. Traditionally, cantucci (or cantuccini, which refers to the smaller version!) are studded with almonds, with a bit of orange essence either in the form of juice, zest, or oil. However, there are many other iterations of the cookie these days, including what might be our favorite: the chocolate-chip variety.
In the US, we typically enjoy our biscotti dipped into espresso, but in Italy, it's also traditional to dip them into a glass of good Vin Santo after a meal. That said - the espresso route is still very much accepted.