Saturday, December 19, 2015

Orange Coconut Balls-12 Days of Christmas Treats

This is a recipe that is probably as old as I am.  I cannot remember when it wasn’t around.  I know that it was being made when I got married 53 years ago.

It is such a great recipe for the holidays since it can be made ahead.  The flavor of the balls improves with time.  The balls work on either cookie or candy plates and the tart orange flavor is a nice change from chocolate and peppermint.

Since this recipe uses only half of a twelve ounce can of frozen orange juice, I like to use the Old Orchard brand wich has a plastic lid that can be replaced on the container.  Of course, the extra orange juice can just be made into juice to drink.  If the orange juice container is all plastic, it can be zapped for 1 minute in the microwave to thaw the juice enough to measure out what is needed.

When I got ready to make the recipe, I realized that the box of vanilla wafers I had purchased at Dollar Tree weighed only 8 ounces and the recipe called for a 12-ounce box.  I looked around my kitchen and saw a sleeve of Ritz crackers so I made up the difference with the Ritz.  I could not tell the difference between this combination and using all vanilla wafers.

Since there is no heat involved, this is a good recipe to have kids help make.  They can shape the balls and roll them in the coconut.

The balls tend to soften some at room temperature so add to cookie or candy plates just before serving.  Store the balls in a covered container in single layers with waxed paper between in the refrigerator.

Orange Coconut Balls
1/2 c. butter, softened
2 c. confectioner’s sugar
3/4 c. undiluted frozen orange juice concentrate.
1 (12 oz.) box vanilla wafers made into crumbs or 1 (8 oz.) box vanilla wafers and 1 sleeve Ritz crackers made into crumbs
1 (7 oz.) pkg. sweetened flaked coconut.

Place butter and confectioner’s sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix until well creamed.  Add orange juice concentrate and beat until well blended.  Stir in vanilla wafer crumbs and mix until crumbs are incorporated.  Place the coconut in a pie pan or other shallow container.  Form the orange juice mixture into 1-inch balls and roll in coconut.  Place balls in a parchment or waxed paper-lined baking sheet.  Place in refrigerator to firm up.  Store balls in single layers with waxed paper between layers in a lidded container in the refrigerator.  Makes about 60 balls.

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