Saturday, December 14, 2013

Triple Orange Biscotti ~ #ChristmasWeek #CakeBossBaking

Welcome to Day #6 of Christmas Week, a multi-blogger event co-hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Jen from Juanita’s Cocina!  Each day we will be celebrating the holidays with a different set of Christmas-themed treats, as well as a fabulous Christmas giveaway.  We hope you enjoy this fabulous event.  Tune in each day starting today, Monday, December 9th and ending Saturday, December 14th.


A few weeks ago I posted about my holiday spirit... or as you may remember, it was my lack of holiday spirit that concerned Liv and had her proclaiming how much more joyful other moms made the season.  Well, this year I've been working on it, and I'm succeeding!

Christmas Spirit just may be a state of mind, but embracing this season has had my December a really joyful place.  From decorating and shopping to  wrapping presents and writing cards, this season has been amazingly fun and I owe a part of my joyousness to Kim and Jen for setting up #ChristmasWeek and including me in the festivities.

Reading the cheerful and jolly posts from this fabulous group of food bloggers, one's heart can't help but soar.  And today, we wrap up this celebration with even more treats and one final giveaway... the best of the week according to Liv.  Everyone knows Buddy from the Cake Boss right?  Check below for this awesome Cake Boss bakeware and tools giveaway!

But first we have a treat.  The amazingly bright Triple Orange Biscotti.  If you're a regular reader of Liv Life, you can probably guess my favorite ingredient of the orange trio... that heavenly and luscious Grand Marnier. 

While the recipe includes only a few tablespoons of the ambrosial liquor, I've found the ingredient truly takes the biscotti up a level.  Along with fragrant orange zest in combination with the juice of a seasonal sweet orange, these crunchy treats bring a brightness to your morning coffee and a perk to an afternoon treat.

Packaged in a cute tin or a clear bag with a bow, these cookies make an ideal hostess gift, and with the decent sized result from the recipe, there are always plenty to save a few for yourself.

I've been making biscotti for some 20 years, and while I love everything about these cookies, I have to admit their sticky dough is one of the most challenging I've worked with.  A Fine Cooking recipe from 2003, I've made this recipe several times as written as well as with a few variations, all with success.

With olive oil included in the ingredient list, I've occasionally left the oil out to reduce the calorie count, and I've also substituted whole wheat flour for a portion of the all-purpose.  But for the holidays I usually stick to the original recipe and these sunny biscotti are always welcomed with a smile.

The recipe comments that the dough will be sticky... and be aware that they really mean it.  Sticky... very, very sticky.  Making my biscotti yesterday I decided to try two batches, one exactly as written in 2003 and the second, making changes where I figured I could probably make the biscotti better.

How did they turn out??  Well... lets just say both versions were exceedingly good, and while my version was innately easier to work with, the Fine Cooking version baked up better.  Hence, I'm sticking with the sticky dough (it almost seems slack, as if it will puddle off of the cookie sheet, but it won't) and admitting that Fine Cooking really might know as much as, or perhaps... a little more than I about baking.

But who knows more about baking than anyone??  The Cake Boss!!  And wouldn't you love to be the lucky recipient of this fabulous giveaway???  Liv looked at it this morning and exclaimed, "Why, oh why did you have to write for this one?  What were you thinking??"  I believe I got one of my first serious eye rolls included somewhere in there too.  But she's kind of right, how cool is this???!!!

Today’s #ChristmasWeek giveaway comes courtesy of Cake Boss Baking. Cake Boss Baking is the new branded bake ware from Buddy Valastro, the talented chef and baker behind the TLC TV show, "Cake Boss". Cake Boss Baking features a full line of cake pans, decorating tools, dessert plates and more, with product for all levels of expertise. Cake Boss Baking is offering one #ChristmasWeek reader the opportunity to win a prize package full of baking tools and essentials {ARV: $260}, including: 

To enter, read the details and use the Rafflecopter below!
 ***This giveaway is for one Cake Boss Baking baking essentials prize pack (details listed above).  This giveaway is open to Continental US residents only.  When the contest concludes, the winner will be chosen by random draw.  The winner will be notified through e-mail and they will have 3 days to respond or another winner will be chosen.***
And now that you've entered to win that awesome prize package, take a trip with me to see what everyone else brought to close out this fabulous #ChristmasWeek!

  • How To Make Perfect Gingerbread People by Cravings of a Lunatic
  • Slow Cooker Pumpkin Cobbler by Juanita's Cocina
  • S'mores Fudge by Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
  • Cherry Noir Noel by Noshing With The Nolands
  • Japanese Blondies by Ninja Baking
  • Peanut Brittle by Food Lust People Love
  • Elf Nibbles by Dizzy Busy and Hungry
  • Cheesecake Chocolate Chip Cookies with Salted Caramel by Rants From My Crazy Kitchen
  • Gingerbread Men Cookies by Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
  • Mint Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookie Bars by Mom's Test Kitchen
  • Penuche by Cooking In Stilettos
  • Triple Orange Biscotti by Liv Life
  • Homemade Caramels by Jen's Favorite Cookies
  • Kerstol (Dutch Christmas Bread) by The Dutch Baker's Daughter
  • Dark Chocolate Orange Ricotta Tart with Honey Almond Crust by Cupcakes & Kale Chips
  • Tropical Toffee Brittle by Home Cooking Memories
  • Chocolate Raspberry Linzer Cookies by Pineapple and Coconut
  • Lemon-Pistachio and White Chocolate Biscotti by The Little Ferraro Kitchen 

  • Triple Orange Biscotti
    Delicate orange flavors meld into the perfect crunch with this Fine Cooking biscotti recipe.  Note the dough is sticky and a little difficult to work with, but the end result makes it true winner.
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    12 oz. (2 2/3 cups) all-purpose flour (we occasionally sub 2/3 cups of whole wheat flour for 2/3 cup of all-purpose)
    1 1/2 cups granulated sugar (I reduce to 1 1/4 cup)
    2 tsp baking powder
    3/4 tsp salt
    Finely grated zest of 2 oranges to yield about 1/4 cup (I have used as little as 2 Tbs with good results - but more is always better!)
    1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
    3 large eggs, room temp
    5 Tbs olive oil (I always reduce to 2 1/2 Tbs)
    2 Tbs freshly squeezed orange juice
    1 Tbs orange liqueur such as Grand Marnier (I usually splash rather than measure... probably more like 2 Tbs)

    Preheat oven to 350ºF and prepare two baking sheets (with silicone mats, parchment paper or cooking spray).

    In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the sugar, baking powder and salt to combine.  Put a bit of the flour mixture into a small bowl and add the orange zest.  Rub the zest into the flour to keep it from clumping.  Add the coated zest and the pecan back into the large bowl with the flour mixture and stir to combine.

    In a small bowl, whisk the eggs with the olive oil, orange juice and Grand Marnier until well blended.  Pour into the center of the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough is blended.  The dough will be very sticky.

    Dump the dough onto a heavily floured work surface and divide into six equal portions (Liv Life usually divides into 3 portions).  Roll each portion into a log 12 inches long, dusting with flour along the way to keep the dough from sticking.  Set the logs about 3 inches (Liv Life suggests even more!) apart on the prepared baking sheets and press gently to flatten each log so that it's 1 1/2 - 2 inches wide.

    Bake until the logs are golden and the tops are fairly firm near the center, 22 - 25 minutes, rotating the sheets and switching their positions after 10 minutes to ensure even baking.  Set the sheets on racks until the logs are cool enough to handle, 20-30 minutes.  Leave the oven set to 350º.

    Transfer the logs to a cutting board, and using a serrated knife, saw slices on a sharp diagonal into 1/2-inch thick slices.  Arrange the slices on the baking sheet and bake the bistotti for about 6 minutes.  Turn each biscotti over, then rotate the baking sheets.  Bake until the biscotti are golden, another 8-10 minutes.

    Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheets for about 5 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely.  Note, the biscotti will crisp as they cool.

    Store at room temperature for freeze in an airtight container.  Enjoy!

    Liv Life Note:  As I found the dough to be challenging to handle I have, in the past, added extra flour.  While this works fine, try to resist the urge to add large amounts of flour as the additional flour variations baked up a bit dry where the original Fine Cooking reicpe baked into a beautiful biscotti with no cracking on top of the logs.

    Liv Life Note 2:  When baking the biscotti for the second time I stand my biscotti up rather than lay them on their side, this reduces the obligation to flip the cookies part way through the baking.  Bake about the same amount of time, perhaps a few minutes shorter, but still until the biscotti are golden.

    ***Disclaimer: This giveaway is being provided by Cake Boss Baking. #ChristmasWeek bloggers have not received product or been compensated as a part of this giveaway.***


    1. I've yet to make biscotti but it's on my list! Love the orange flavor in yours!

      1. Heather... you will love them!! Biscotti aren't difficult, but can take a little time.

    2. I adore biscotti, and can't wait to try my hand at these!

      Happy day #6!

    3. I've never made biscotti at home before, but these look delicious and fairly easy to make!!

      1. Kristin, Hope you give it a try!! Once you make them, you'll wonder why you waited so long.

    4. I would try to make biscotti. I've never tried making them before, but my sisters love them. It would make a great gift for any occasion.

      1. We give them as gifts every year and have requests for more!

    5. The biscotti looks great and I have never made it before.

    6. Grand Marnier in biscotti? I'm in! So interesting that you add olive oil...Love the option of whole wheat flour, too...Ah, choices, choices - joyful choices =)

      1. I usually don't add extra oils to my biscotti, but this worked beautifully!

    7. I'd make sugar cookies and practice my decorating skills. And your biscotti is definitely something I would love to be enjoying right now.

      1. They would be fabulous with a cup of Kona Coffee!!

    8. Ahh we both made biscotti!!! Love your orange flavor!! I love everything with zest and grand marnier lol

    9. chocolate chip oatmeal cookies

      fruticrmble AT Comcast DOT net

    10. I think some mini cakes and then I could carry them to a holiday function. I know what you mean about the holiday spirit. it is truly a state of mind and one can make a conscious decision to enjoy or to be stressed. I tend to fall somewhere in the middle. LOL Beautiful biscotti.

    11. Kim, these look so yummy, something about biscotti just makes me fell festive! What a perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee or cocoa on Christmas morning your biscotti would be!

    12. I'd try to make the biscotti. They look wonderful.

    13. You are too sweet. I am so happy you joined the CW crew. It's been such a pleasure having you.

      Now this biscotti is amazing. I love orange flavoured treats. I need to try this asap.

    14. This would have been perfect with my morning coffee! I am such a dunker into tea or coffee with cookies :-)

      1. While I'm not a dunker, I've been enjoying these with my coffee every morning!!

    15. Gorgeous biscotti, Kim! I love the triple hit of yummy!!! These would make the perfect hostess gift for the holidays!

    16. That Biscotti looks absolutely delish! I'd love to try my hand at that.
      Samantha V.


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