Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Pignoli Cookies

These cookies are one of my favorites. Definitely a treat, these moist, chewy and flavorful cookies are made almost entirely of almond paste. In fact, they could be gluten free if you chose not to use the moderate amount of flour that's suggested in the batter.

These cookies are apparently Sicilian in origin. They are often made around the holidays, but I see no reason to not enjoy them year round.

The recipe is very easy. I used a food processor to make the dough, which made it very easy and quick. Most recipes called for almond paste in a can because it's softer, but I only have access to the tube kind, so my quantities were off by an ounce, but nothing seemed to be ruined because of it.

  • 1 (8 oz) Can Almond Paste
  • 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 C Powdered Sugar
  • 1/4 C Flour*
  • 2 Egg Whites (this amount can vary depending on how moist the dough gets. Start with 1 white and only add more if necessary)
  • 8 Ounces Pine Nuts
  • Extra Powdered Sugar To Finish (I forgot to do that part - woops)
Preheat to 300 F.

In a food processor, pulse the almond paste into small pieces, and add the two sugars and the flour (* recommended, but could make it without). Once those are mixed thoroughly, begin to add the egg whites a little at a time, just until the dough comes together.

I used a small cookie scoop to divvy up the batter. At each spoonful, I tossed it with the pine nuts and placed on a parchment lined cookie sheet. No need to flatten - a sphere of cookie dough will bake into a nicely rounded mound that is super moist and chewy on the inside while crisp outside.

Bake for about 25 minutes until lightly browned. The pine nuts will add such a nice warm and nutty flavor to the already super almondy dough - amazing.

Once they cool, I suppose that's where you're supposed to sprinkle them with powdered sugar. Go for it. I'm sure it's lovely.

I was only able to get about 10 cookies from this recipe, but they are totally worth it.

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