Figgy Newton Biscotti
1 cup dried figs
1/2 cup raisins or dried dates, pitted
1/2 cup water
1 1/3 cup brown sugar, pressed firmly
1 cup white sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon orange extract, optional
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 cups rolled oats or old fashioned oatmeal
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional
In a small saucepan, place the fruit and cover with about 1/3 cup water. Simmer 10-15 minutes on lowest heat, until fruit is slightly softened and most of the water is gone (if however, you need a bit more water to simmer, add a little at a time). Remove from the stove and cool about 20 minutes before pureeing the fruit (drained) in a food processor, 1 – 2 minutes. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, with a paddle attachment, cream the sugar and butter well, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla, orange oil and lemon juice and blend well, about 2 minutes. Fold in the cinnamon, salt, baking powder, most of the flour and oatmeal, nuts, and mix until dough is thick and soft and holds together. Add more flour if mixture is not stiff.
Spread half of batter on a baking sheet, top with the fruit paste, and cover with remaining biscotti batter. Bake loaf for 40-45 minutes until just browned and firm to the touch.
Cool loaf to room temperature. Cut loaf into diagonal slices, about one inch wide and return to baking sheet. Decrease oven temperature to 325 F. and bake cookies once more, to crisp, 15 – 20 minutes.