• Leigh

Fast Cookies: Orange-Coconut Biscotti


Most people who cook seem to think biscotti are time-consuming to make. They aren't. Which is one reason I really like biscotti. I need only one cookie sheet to make them--which means easy cleanup. The biscotti also are one of the few cookies I can mix up, pop in the oven while I prepare the rest of my dinner--the first bake is about 30 minutes--and then finish baking while my family eats. Admittedly, I do need to turn the biscotti once during dinner, but that takes only a minute or two. The cookies are done in time for dessert. Fresh, hot, crunchy, and perfect with fruit and coffee. Or just eat the biscotti on their own. The version I'm offering today is Orange-Coconut Biscotti, which is one of my Dad's favorites. The cookies are lightly flavored with orange and a little nubby from the addition of shredded coconut and cornmeal. These are fairly soft biscotti, not the super crunchy, tooth shattering variety. If you'd like them harder, you can certainly bake them longer, but my family likes them a bit crunchy on the outside and softer when you bite into them. They'll be good either way you choose to make them.

Orange-Coconut Biscotti -- Makes About 24

2/3 cup of sugar

1/4 cup of canola oil

2 eggs

1 teaspoon of orange zest

1/4 cup of orange juice

1 teaspoon of coconut extract

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon of rum extract

1 1/2 cups of flour

1 cup of cornmeal

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg

1 cup of shredded coconut

2-3 tablespoons of raw (turbinado) sugar (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and coat a large baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray or line it with parchment paper. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, canola oil, eggs, orange zest, orange juice, coconut extract, vanilla extract, and rum extract until well blended. With a wooden spoon stir in the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg until just combined. Stir in the coconut. On the prepared baking sheet, form two logs, roughly an inch or two wide and 8-10 inches long. The batter will be very wet, so the easiest way to form the logs is to spread the batter out into two longish sections, moisten your hands with water, and then shape the logs with your damp hands. If you'd like, sprinkle the tops of the logs with a little raw sugar. Bake the logs for about 30 minutes or until just barely firm. Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Let the logs cool for 5-7 minutes and then cut them crosswise into 3/4-1-inch thick slices. Place the slices flat side down on the baking sheet and return them to the oven. Bake the slices for 7-8 minutes, then flip them (yes, they're very hot--use two forks to flip them!) and bake them another 7-8 minutes. Let the biscotti cool a few minutes before serving them.

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