Grand Marnier Biscotti with Dried Cranberries and Almonds

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Cranberry relish. For me it conjures images of a scarlet can-shaped jelly substance sliced in thick circles, lying and shimmering on a plate in the center of the table, jiggling as everyone jostles to find their seats for Thanksgiving dinner. At the adult table that is, because those of us seated at the kid’s table would never touch the stuff.

As we got older and became responsible for creating our own Thanksgiving feasts, we simply omitted the cranberry sauce. We’ve roasted 20 pound birds, created moist seasoned stuffing from scratch, and served up pies that were perfectly and not so perfectly set. Yet cranberry sauce was nowhere to be found.

It wasn’t until years later that we came across a recipe for fresh cranberry relish that incorporates oranges, apples, pineapples, and Grand Marnier that we reconsidered adding it to our holiday menu. Really, what fruit doesn’t taste better soaked in booze! Now, I make it every time we have turkey, Thanksgiving or not.

While pumpkin pie is still a staple Thanksgiving dessert in our house, these Grand Marnier Biscotti with Dried Cranberries and Almonds also find their way to our dessert table every year. On a holiday that is really all about food, no one should be limited to just one dessert!


Grand Marnier Biscotti with Dried Cranberries and Almonds

YIELD: approximately two dozen

2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup packed light brown sugar

2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

3 eggs

zest of one orange

3 tablespoons Grand Marnier

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup dried cranberries

½ cup almonds


1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place the rack in the middle of the oven.

2.  In a large flat-bottomed bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, baking powder, and salt.

3.  In a smaller bowl, whisk together the eggs, orange zest, Grand Mariner, and vanilla extract.

4.  With a rubber spatula, stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until the dough just starts to come together.  Dust your hands with flour and knead the dough in the bowl until all the ingredients are incorporated and the dough is tacky.

5.  Add the cranberries and almonds. Knead the dough until incorporated, about 10 – 20 times.

6.  Separate the dough in half.  Form two logs, approximately 3 inches wide and 1 inch high on a parchment lined baking sheet. Leave several inches between the logs, the dough will spread as it bakes.

7. Sprinkle the top of each log with Grand Marnier and spread with hands. Sprinkle the tops with sugar.

8.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until the tops begin to crack or split.  Transfer logs to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

9.  Transfer biscotti logs to a cutting board.  Slice the biscotti on a diagonal and place cut side down on the same parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake for an additional 20 minutes, turning the biscotti once halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.


What to do with the ends #49: Stuff the turkey with the ends rather than traditional stuffing.