When you have a teething baby on board, it’s important to also have biscuits or other snacks on hand that will help ease their sore gums and coax new teeth through. When my son was teething, I was surprised to find lengthy ingredient lists – including palm oil and plenty of sugar – in many packaged teething biscuits, so I made my own. Biscotti was a natural choice.
The oblong shape and hard texture of twice – baked biscotti is ideal for little hands and new teeth; keep it plain, experiment with different flours (try barley or oat flour, keeping in mind that low-gluten and gluten-free flours such as oat tend to produce crumbly baked goods) or pureed fruits and vegetables to make your own signature biscotti. No matter what kind of teething biscuit you make, ensure you’re within arms’ reach of your baby at all times while he or she is eating – there’s no biscuit that’s completely resistant to crumbling and breakage.
1/4 cup butter, melted, or canola or olive oil
1 jar pureed fruit or vegetable (try sweet potato) or large mashed ripe banana
2 large eggs
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2-1 cup oats
1 tsp. baking powder
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a large bowl, beat butter, puree and eggs until smooth. Add the flour, oats, baking powder and salt and stir until almost combined; add any additions you want and stir just until blended. If it seems dry, use your hands to complete the mixing as the dough comes together. If it’s too sticky (this will depend on the puree you use), add more flour until you have a soft, stiff dough.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Divide in half and shape each piece into an 8” long log. Place the logs 2”–3” apart on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick spray, and flatten each into a rectangle that is about 3” wide.
Bake for 20–25 minutes, until firm and starting to crack on top. Transfer the logs to a wire rack to cool for a bit and reduce the oven temperature to 275°F.
When they’re cool enough to handle (they tend to crumble when they’re still hot), place the logs on a cutting board, trim the ends and cut each log diagonally into 1/2”–3/4” slices with a serrated knife. Place the slices upright on the cookie sheet, spacing them about 1/2” apart so that there’s room for the air to circulate between them, and return to the oven for 30 minutes. If you like, turn the heat off and leave the biscotti inside the oven until it cools down to make them even harder. Makes about 2 dozen biscotti.