Serves a Crowd

Mandelbrot (PassoverĀ biscotti)

April 25, 2018
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Author Notes

This is a recipe that grew on me. First learned it from my aunt, Geraline Morris, of Rochester, NY. Kept making it as an adult for Passover because I liked it. Then started playing with it. Best change was using olive oil as the fat, instead of neutral oil. With the (original) plain oil, the cookie was good. With the olive oil, it went to a new level. Now it's a crumbly, delicious hybrid of biscotti and shortbread. Also played with shapes. When I serve these, people are surprised and delughted with how good they are (because Passover desserts are often humdrum or subpar). And I remember my aunt and family Seders when growing up. —Nancy

  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Serves 25-30
  • 1 1/2 cups matzo cake meal for Passover (or AP flour, 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 cups)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 3/4 cup eggs (about 3 large) or soft tofu
  • 1 dash salt
  • as needed oil to grease cookie sheets & soup spoon
  • Jam topping (optional)
  • 1/2 cup jam (your choice, or more than one)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In This Recipe
  1. Heat oven to 350F
  2. Lightly grease two regular or select two non-stick baking sheets
  3. Beat oil and eggs (or tofu) with a mixer, blender or processor until fluffy. Add sugar & mix again. In another bowl, mix the cake meal, salt and ground almonds.
  4. Mix the wets and dries to do this, or at least finish it, by hand, as batter will get very thick. Spread in 3" wide logs, one on each baking sheet.
  5. Bake 30 minutes & remove from oven. Cut across the logs at an angle (30-45 degrees) into sticks about 3/4" wide.
  6. Spread the sticks on baking sheets & bake 10-20 minutes more, depending on how crisp or dark you want them.
  7. Serve as Seder dessert. Or during the week of Passover, with wine or coffee.
  8. ALTERNATE 1: with jam topping. Bake first time ONLY 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Using an oiled large spoon, make a trench down the center of each log. Spread the jam in the indentation. Dust with cinnamon & sugar. Return to oven and bake another 30 minutes. Cool. Cut across the jam to make individual cookies.
  9. ALTERNATE 2: with different pans and shapes. Bake in square pans, then cut in smaller squares. Or in round pans, and cut in wedges like shortbread. Or shaped in rounds, like thumbprint cookies. You will still need sheet pans or cookie sheets for enough space for the second baking.
  10. ALTERNATE 3: another way to serve jam topping. Bake the cookies plain. Serve at table with one or more jams in small bowls for dipping or spooning out.

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