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Dried fruit biscuits. Thank you for making me feel special

On Friday I published the post on I love Toscana and I’ve been overwhelmed by your love and care here on the blog, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram (you cannot say I am not a modern and connected girl…). You made me feel special.

I will get back to everyone, one by one, because I want to tell you how much you made me happy and proud. I have been cooking the whole day for a Christmas lunch well ahead of time – probably not too much, since I shot the first one in October – so just imagine I baked these dried fruit biscuits for you, made for the 2012 Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, with the promise to be back here again soon to give you my daily dose of good humor and gratitude. You are precious, from the first one to last one.

Once again, one year after the first exciting edition that made me discover new foodbloggers and taste new scrumptious cookies, the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap is here to cheer us up and fill our lives with Christmas-y sweetness, hosted by Lindsay of Love & Olive oil and Julie of The Little Kitchen. How does it work?

The premise is this: sign up. Receive the addresses of three other food bloggers. Send each of them one dozen delicious homemade cookies. Receive three different boxes of scrumptious cookies from other bloggers. Eat them all yourself (or, you know, share. If you want. No judgement either way.) Post your cookie recipe on your blog. See everyone else’s cookie recipes. Salivate. Get lots of great ideas for next years’ cookie swap. Rinse and repeat.

You rinse and repeat, then you need to find a good recipe for a new batch of biscuits.

Every day more intrigued, I was leafing through The Talisman An Italian Cookbook written by Ada Boni, the same book that inspired me the stuffed carrots.

The cookie section is unbelievable. There are old fashioned biscuits, good and simple, the same you would imagine your grandmother arrange on her most precious English pottery dish when you visit at tea time. They come with evocative names like princesses (I will make these very soon), Margaret pastries and Favorita pastries. I bought this secondhand cookbook from an unknown grandmother on Amazon and she wrote down many comments next to the recipes with a fascinating calligraphy: she confirmed these cookies were good.


I eventually decided to bake the most Christmas-y evocative cookies, bursting with dried fruit and candied orange. These are delicate and tempting biscuits perfect to be served with ice cream, tea, chocolate, dessert wines… and most of all, you won’t believe how easy they are.

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3.75 from 4 votes

Dried fruit biscuits

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour 10 minutes


  • 200 g of icing sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 150 g of raisins, soaked and squeezed
  • 150 g of almonds
  • 80 g of of pine nuts
  • 70 g of of hazelnuts
  • 125 g of candied citron
  • 125 g of candied orange peel
  • 200 g of flour


  • Preheat oven to 170°C.
  • Pour the icing sugar into a bowl and mix in an egg at a time, whisking with the electric whisk or with a wooden spoon until light and foamy, as suggested by Ada Boni.
  • Add the soaked and squeezed raisins, the chopped almonds, pine nuts, hazelnuts and the finely minced candied citron and orange peel.
  • At the end add the flour and mix gently.
  • Sprinkle some flour on the marble kitchen table and spoon the dough over the table. Shape the dough into a sausage with your floured hands.
  • Roll it gently and place it on a lightly buttered baking sheet. Brush the surface with a beaten egg and bake for about an hour.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool, then cut it into thin slices.
  • The biscuits are ready now, though I preferred to bake them again for 5 minutes in a preheated oven to 190°C, until golden and crisp.
Tried this recipe?We love to see your creations! Snap a pic and tag @julskitchen and hashtag it #myseasonaltable!

My cookies this year came from:

  • RossellaMa che ti sei mangiato? crunchy cardamom and dried fig cantucci
  • DanielaGourmet Daniela round and chubby almond cookies
  • Veruska   Cuochina Sopraffina, directly from Dublin unusual yet amazingly delicious white chocolate and dried blueberry gluten- free cookies

My dried fruit biscuits run to:

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This Post Has 16 Comments
  1. That is such a great idea.

    Your biscuits look amazing! They would be the perfect accompaniment to Vin Santo or coffee.



  2. You are special, and I love to hear from you! I’m going to make these biscuits – hope I can get them nice and thin like yours. Merry Christmas Juls!

  3. I’m so glad you posted this recipe, I’ve been dying to try my hand at crisp biscuits like these, although I’ve been craving a savory version to pair with cheese. Do you have any tips for getting such perfect thin slices?

    1. Hi Sue! they must be amazing savoury!
      As for the trick, let them cool down completely and most important, use your sharpest knife! Be quick and steady, and slice them!

  4. I love your reindeer tins at the top! I don’t know how this cookie swap passed me by, it’s in nearly every post I’ve read tonight! I must make sure I take part next time round. Congratulations on the book by the way, you must be thrilled!

  5. 5 stars
    The virtual cookie swap is a great idea! I love this recipe and look forward to trying it. Your photos are beautiful. I like that I can customize the nuts/fruits by what I have available to me. Thank you!

  6. Is icing sugar the same as powdered sugar in the U.S.? or is it Superfine Sugar?

    I have never mixed it with eggs so just want to make sure. these cookies look fabulous

  7. 5 stars
    Hi Juls,
    I have made these 4 times now. Obviously I love them (and have gotten fabulous reviews on them from the friends I give them to). However, I need to ask, in the ingredients you list 4 eggs, and then when you have shaped them, you say to use an egg wash. When I use 4 eggs in the “batter”, it is too wet to shape into a log on the counter. I did try to shape it the 1st time, and could hardly pick it up. The 2nd batch I added a bit more flour so I could handle it, but I liked the 1st version better. The last 2 times I have just scooped the dough into a log shape on my baking sheet. Which made me think to ask the question. Do you use 4 eggs in the “batter” and then a 5th for the egg wash? Thanks! Kathleen

    1. Hello Kathleen, I am so happy you are enjoying these cookies! I think it can depend a lot on the size of the eggs, maybe ours are a tad smaller, hence it is easier to shape the dough. Anyway, I remember it was quite sticky and so I do like your idea of scooping the dough. Maybe you can try to reduce the amount of eggs!

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