This past weekend, we had 3 guests at our house: my sister-in-law, my niece, and my cousin. They were participating in a biking event (bicycles, not Harley’s) in the area and didn’t want to make the big drive the morning of the near 50 mile ride.
Do you know what I call relatives that come to stay for a night?
This was my chance to experiment with a recipe or two. On my desk, I had just the recipe for such an occasion. This was one of those recipes that I found and it just made me so curious that I had to save it. I knew it would be good but I didn’t know if it would be good enough to commit to my recipe collection.
Luckily, these gals are super curious and not fussy at all. When they arrived and saw these bite-sized treats on the counter, they didn’t wait for an explanation. My niece took a bite and quickly declared “Mmmm … Tasty!”
The original recipe came from … where else? … an Advent Devotion book, printed by my good friend’s church. Every year they ask their members and associates to write a devotion and include a recipe. A lady named Anette Knoll submitted the recipe called “Orange Balls” and the thing that really captured my attention was the use of frozen orange juice concentrate. That, and the fact that this was a no-bake recipe. When you see the list of other ingredients, I think you’ll see why I kept it for 6 months. Well, you’ll probably wonder why it took me so long to actually make them!
I started thinking about frozen juice concentrates and realized I had options: lemonade, limeade, pineapple juice, apple juice, etc. I decided on a combination of lemon and pineapple. After all, the recipe involves rolling the dough balls in coconut so why not go with a tropical profile? Once I started thinking Hawaii, macadamia nuts ended up in my cart too.
And this is the resulting recipe …
1 pound vanilla wafers
1 1/2 cups macadamia nuts
1 1/2 cups unsweetened flake coconut
1 stick softened butter
6 oz frozen lemonade concentrate, defrosted
6 oz frozen pineapple concentrate, defrosted
1 pound powdered sugar
NOTE: One box of vanilla wafers is not one pound. Most boxes are 11-12 oz.
Finely crush vanilla wafers in a food processor (or by hand). Finely chop macadamia nuts in a food processor (or by hand). Toast coconut and macadamia nuts in a dry pan on low heat, stirring frequently until slightly browned and fragrant; place in a shallow bowl.
Combine vanilla wafer crumbs, butter, defrosted juice concentrates (start with 3/4 of each concentrate and add more as needed to get a “rollable” consistency), and powdered sugar with an electric mixer.
Use a small (1 inch) cookie scoop to make balls or shape by hand. Roll in coconut/macadamia nut mixture and place on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate to set.
Makes about 6 dozen Bites.
Now that I’ve made and enjoyed these “tasty” bites, I am curious about other combinations and ingredients:
- adding citrus zest for an extra punch of flavor
- almonds, pecans, pistachios, or walnuts
- fresh herbs (like thyme or mint)
- spices (chili powder, cinnamon, nutmeg)
- margarita mix
These are a perfect sweet bite for picnics, reunions, parties and bridal/baby showers. They can be made ahead and refrigerated.