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A biscotti jar is a jar which has been designed to hold biscotti, an Italian delicacy popular in many regions of the world. In addition to biscotti, biscotti jars can also hold cookies, crackers, and a variety of other baked goods. Home supply stores and Italian specialty stores may stock biscotti jars, and many ordinary jars and containers may be used for biscotti, with the main restriction on use being shape and size.
Biscotti are twice-baked cookies which are traditionally flavored with anise and nuts. They are made by forming dough into a loaf shape, baking the dough partially, and then cutting the loaf into slices which are baked again. The result is a very crisp, flavorful cookie which may be left plain, or dipped in a coating such as chocolate. Biscotti are often served with coffee as an after-dinner treat, although they can be eaten at other times of the day as well.
Typically, biscotti take the form of long ovoid forms. Therefore, a jar designed for biscotti must be large enough to hold the cookies without breaking them. Many biscotti jars are tall and narrow, allowing biscotti to stand on end in the jar, while others may be broad so that the cookies can lie flat in the jar. The jar can be clear or opaque, with opaque jars being better for longer storage, and the top of the jar may include a gasket to keep the jar airtight, or loose.
If the lid on a biscotti jar is loose and the air is humid, the cookies can get soft and soggy, which is undesirable. Dry air can tend to contribute to staleness, but because the cookies are classically dipped, it can sometimes be difficult to identify whether or not they are stale, so this is usually not a problem. Loose jars can also admit ants and other insects, which can be a problem in some regions. Tight jars, on the other hand, can make the cookies soft over time.
Many cafes and coffeehouses keep a biscotti jar on the counter, stocking it with cookies for guests. Some people also like to keep biscotti around the home, along with other snacks and baked goods, in which case a jar which coordinates with a set of other containers may be used. A filled biscotti jar may also be given as a gift, with the jar acting as packaging for the cookies inside; such gifts are especially popular for housewarmings, where people may need kitchen items like jars to get established in their new homes.
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