Everything’s Comin’ up Orange.

OK, so I forgot to mention that I have more than one obsession. Shoot me. In addition to my love of butterscotch (and, if I think about it, probably ahead of it), I love all things citrus. So, as with the previously posted butterscotch recipes, you can expect from this post nothing but the best of all the orange-flavored delectables I have encountered in my lengthy culinary quest.

The first contender is my hands-down favorite muffin recipe. Not only is it simply bursting with orange flavor (thanks to the fact that it calls for an entire orange blended in the food processor), but it is also made almost entirely in the food processor. In The Brooklyn Cookbook it was titled Adele Horowitz’s Mother’s Orange Muffins, but I have simplified it here for obvious reasons. Easy. Fabulous. Not kidding here. My favorite.

Makes 12

 

ORANGE MUFFINS

The Brooklyn Cookbook

2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

4 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter

1 cup sugar

3 eggs

1 whole orange, including rind, seeds discarded, washed (look for a thin-skinned orange so that you don’t get too much pith beneath the skin, as it tends to be bitter)

½ cup milk

Preheat oven to 350º F

Whirl the flour, baking powder and salt in the food processor to blend. In food processor, work the butter into the dry ingredients until at the “coarse meal” stage. Put into a bowl and add sugar. In food processor, put eggs, and orange, which you have cut into pieces, and whirl until the orange is in tiny bits. Add milk and give it a brief whirl to mix. Stir this into the dry ingredients until just moist.

Pour into greased muffin tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let rest in the pan for a few minutes on a baking rack before turning out of the pan.

For a coffeecake, pour into a greased 10” tube pan and bake for 45 to 60 minute

My favorite flavors (actually two of them, orange AND almond!) come together here in a wonderfully flavorful biscotti. While I have never encountered a biscotti I didn’t like, these are, in my opinion, the very best orange-almond bicotti on the planet. Many orange biscotti recipes call for almond extract, but I prefer my orange PURE, and this recipe delivers just that. They are easy to make, fabulous tasting, and keep as only biscotti can. Great for reduced size households, for their storage qualities, and for those who like an occasionaly sweet, but who are watching carbs.

Makes about 48

 

ORANGE-ALMOND BISCOTTI

Gourmet

From the bakery in Greve, in Chianti, Italy

2 cups white flour

1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs

1 large egg yolk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 T fresh orange zest
1 ½ cups almonds, whole, toasted lightly and roughly chopped

Egg wash:

1 large egg beaten with 1 tsp. water

Heat the oven to 300° F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, blend the flour, the sugar, the baking soda and the salt until the mixture is combined well. In a small bowl whisk together the whole eggs, the yolk, the vanilla and the zest, add the mixture to the flour mixture, beating until a dough is formed and stir in the almonds.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, knead it several times and halve it.Working on a large buttered and floured baking sheet, with floured hands form each piece of dough into a flattish log 12 inches long and 2 inches wide, arrange the logs at least 3 inches apart on the sheet, and brush them with the egg wash.
Bake the logs in the middle of a preheated 300 degrees F for 50 minutes and them cool on the baking rack for 10 minutes.
On a cutting board, cut the logs crosswise on the diagonal into ½ inch thick slices, arrange the biscotti, cut sides down, on the baking sheet and bake them for 15 minutes on each side.

Transfer the biscotti to racks to cool and store them in airtight containers.

This is an amazing cake. It is just bursting with orange flavor, is easy to make, and is also gluten –free! Not cake-like in texture, but rather dense and almondy, while delivering in spades that oranginess you’re looking for.

 

ORANGE-ALMOND CAKE

The New James Beard


2 large oranges, preferably navel seedless (I always look for thin-skinned oranges to sidestep the bitterness of the pith)

6 eggs

1 ½ cups ground almonds

Pinch salt

1 cup sugar

1 tsp. baking powder

Preheat oven to 400º F.

Wash oranges and boil in water to cover, without peeling, for 30 minutes. Drain, cool, and cut into quarters.

Process oranges to a moderately fine purée in a blender or food processor.

Beat the eggs in a bowl till thick, then add ground almonds, salt, sugar, baking powder and orange purée and mix well. Pour into a buttered and floured deep 9”cake pan. Bake for one hour or longer until firm to the touch.

Garnish with orange slices dusted with cinnamon and powdered sugar, berries or whipped cream.

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