Cookies are certainly one of the world’s most favourite treats. They attraction to folks of all ages not solely as a result of they’re mouth-wateringly scrumptious but additionally as a result of they’re acquainted and comforting and the scent and style can evoke fond reminiscences. Although a dry, exhausting and brittle cookie won’t sound interesting, this description is attribute of genuine Biscotti and who would not like Biscotti? This uniquely formed cookie will fulfill even the sweetest tooth and it may be eaten at any time of the day for any event.
While many international locations have adopted this historic cookie and created their very own model, in accordance with meals historians, Biscotti had been invented in the Tuscany area of Italy round the thirteenth century in a metropolis referred to as Prato, and it quickly grew to become a typical provision aboard the voyages of Christopher Columbus, and lots of sailors and fishermen. Due to its cooking methodology, Biscotti may final months at sea with out rising stale or moldy. In Italy, whereas the phrase “biscotti” refers to nearly any sort of biscuit or cookie, it actually interprets to “twice cooked”. The bis in Biscotti, plural of Biscotto, means twice and cotto means cooked. Baking the dough twice will eradicate extra moisture and provides the cookie its signature crunchy exhausting texture; making it preferrred for dunking in wine, or any scorching beverage similar to espresso or cocoa and an ideal associate to a wide range of desserts.
Hundreds of years in the past immigrants introduced the recipe for this worldwide deal with to America however it was restricted to Italian and specialty bakeries, or a do-it-yourself cookie served at holidays and particular events. Today, this cookie is all the rage due largely to the current explosion of stylish espresso pubs and the reputation of Italian eating places. The acceptance of this indulgent cookie has been astonishing. Biscotti are actually certainly one of the most acknowledged cookies on the planet. This scrumptious and sometimes decadent delight has carved out a novel area of interest in as we speak’s foodservice trade. From a easy snack to a connoisseur dolci, Biscotti might be discovered nearly anyplace from grocery shops to bakeries, and on dessert menus in tremendous eating eating places.
I requested John Vallone Jr., Marketing Director for Viscotti, his household run Biscotti enterprise about the current surge of Biscotti. “Traditionally biscotti were almond or anise flavored. Today Biscotti is basically a blank canvas and can be flavored with a variety of creative ingredients and exotic spices to produce different flavor combinations. The recipes are endless and limited only by one’s imagination. Everyone likes to say Biscotti, but even better, everyone likes to eat Biscotti”.
John Vallone Sr. agrees. “Being a first generation American, son of a Calabrese father and Sicilian mother, Italian pastries were a standard in the Vallone household. As in the vast majority of Italian homes, Biscotti were the standard pastries for having a “tasse di caffe” with visiting compares and comares. These biscotti, I guess, through some divine guidance, were predominantly Anisette flavored and classically baked to be dunked in hearty Italian coffee. After joining the U.S. Air Force in 1953, my ration of mom’s great biscotti was limited to holiday care packages. As fast as the packages were opened, that’s how fast the biscotti disappeared as my barrack buddies experienced the exquisite flavors of these cookies.
When I retired from the Air Force, I decided to continue the Italian biscotti tradition, at least for the holidays but I wanted biscotti that were distinctive when compared to the standard hard Anisette Biscotti. After a few years of experimenting and eating all my mistakes, I finally developed the flavors and texture that has become the Viscotti trademark. Since these biscotti were far from the standard, I also decided to give them the unique name of “Viscotti”; replacing the B with the V from Vallone setting them apart and quelling any contention that, “These aren’t biscotti; they are not exhausting”.
At first I baked only for family and friends. After rave reviews, I baked them for church bazaars and fundraisers, and John Jr. requested 200 to donate to the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds for one of their special occasions at Nellis. From the response expressed by these airmen, we provided them with quasi-regular shipments in thanks and gratitude for their service as the Ambassadors in Blue of the finest Air Force in the world. With the cooperation of the Thunderbirds, we jointly identified U.S. Military units in Iraq to receive Viscotti for the holidays. In the past 3 years, we have sent over 1500 Viscotti to our troops and the feedback has been heart rendering and that alone has given us the incentive to continue this tradition as long as our brave men and women place themselves in harms way to protect our great nation and to defend the downtrodden of the world.
But we had no real intention of going into the biscotti business; our satisfaction pay came from the gratitude we received from the recipients. But in August of 2006, I struck up a conversation with a group of men while attending the Atlantic City Air Show. We exchanged war stories, traded business cards and talked about our current enterprises. I mentioned that I made the world’s second best biscotti and when asked why “second finest,” I had to explain that if I said I made the world’s best of any type of food to any Italian man, the normal rebuttal would be that “no person makes *that* higher than my poor sainted mom.”
So to save arguments, I magnanimously settle as the world’s second best. One of the men, an Italian American, introduced himself as Olgo Russo, co-owner of A Russo & Sons Inc., a fruit and vegetable vendor in the Boston suburbs. He asked for a business card and I gave him one of my novelty GioV business cards figuring it would be the last time I ever heard from him. Surprisingly, one week later I received an email requesting samples. I sent one dozen. Soon after, he placed an order for 500, and 3 more subsequent orders of 500. He provided samples to a 5-star restaurant in Boston and the Chef de Cuisine’s response: “Amazing!”
“Since that point I’ve not too long ago supplied unsolicited advertising and marketing samples to high quality eating places in upstate New York and Las Vegas and plan to broaden to different metropolitan areas of the US in the close to future. Whether or not the enterprise turns into profitable, I’ll nonetheless proceed to bake the Viscotti for household and mates and charities, and most undoubtedly for our devoted courageous women and men in the United States armed forces”.