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Wife, mama to two boys, professional photographer, cookbook collector, and pasta enthusiast. 

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from: The Index Card Series

You say Mandel Bread, I say Biscotti. Let’s call the whole thing off and just call it the perfect bite to pair with your hot cup of coffee or tea. But what really is the difference between the two? According to my research, mandel bread is richer in fat content which gives it that dreamy texture I reference below, otherwise the two cookies are pretty darn similar.

I know, I know…you want to get straight to the recipe, but it’s time for a backstory! Remember in December when everyone’s Southwest flights were cancelled and chaos ensued?! Well, we were part of that unfortunate group trying to get home which resulted in us driving 32 (yes – THIRTY. TWO.) hours across the country. The silver lining – we got to stop in Dallas to visit my husband’s family and that is where I tasted this delicious mandel bread my mother-in-law had prepared. I grew up eating biscotti, which was almost always served with coffee, and as soon as I took my first bite of this version, I was instantly hooked to the little cookie. Bread? Cookie-bread.

It reminded me of the days when people would just stop by the house and your parents would invite them in for coffee and they’d sit and chat about life for an hour, and there was always a treat on hand (probably for this very occasion) just sitting there ready to be served with the coffee, and then they would go about their business and get back to their day.

Did I just age myself? Does anyone else have memories of that happening?? Either way, I say we need to bring this style of spontaneous gathering back.

Okay, back to the cookies…there is something about the texture and that light cinnamon sugar coating and the crunch, but yet softness, to the cookie that stole my heart. Dip it in your coffee for a few seconds and it just gets even better. And be sure to share with friends when they stop by!

Don’t be fooled by the fancy name, these twice-baked cookies come together so quickly and with ingredients you most likely already have in your pantry!

These are hubby and kid approved in our house and I hope you love them as well! If you make them, be sure to let me know by tagging me on Instagram @jessicamccalla so I can see the deliciousness you’re enjoying!

P.S – Granny, who I reference in the recipe, is my husband’s mother, my lovely mother-in-law, and our boys’ Granny, so we all just refer to her as Granny now. She’s the best and has graciously approved the sharing of this recipe which was passed down to her and originally titled Miss Ducie’s Mundel Bread. I modified the instructions slightly based on how I ended up baking the cookies.

Enjoy, from our hearts to your kitchen….

xo, Jess

Biscotti served with coffee

Mandel Bread

Jessica | Fine Art Fare
Friendly warning: once you start, you'll crave one with all cups of coffee from here on out!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Servings 20 cookies



  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Cinnamon Sugar Topping

  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon


  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Combine eggs and sugar in large bowl and whisk until combined.
  • Add in the remaining ingredients and begin mixing with whisk until just combined. Once the dough gets stiff, finish mixing with hands until it fully comes together.
  • Form a rectangle shaped loaf, about 1 inch thick, and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Sprinkle a light dusting of the cinnamon sugar mixture over the top (you probably won't use the entire mixture, just sprinkle til your heart's content!).
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Turn the oven to broil.
  • Using a serrated knife, slice across the short end of the loaf into 1 to 1 ½ inch thick pieces and then cut each piece in half crosswise. Place slices back onto the cookie sheet, cut side down, and lightly brown on both sides under the broiler. Watch closely as this happens quickly! It will probably take about 3 minutes on each side, depending on your broiler.
  • Remove cookies from oven and let cool on a wire rack.
  • Then, as Granny says, enjoy with coffee for a tasty treat!

March 3, 2023

Mandel Bread (aka Biscotti)

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