Recipe: Lemon almond cookies

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 2D

Prep time: 25 minutes, plus several hours chill time

Cook time: 10 minutes to toast almonds; 15 minutes per cookie batch

Makes about 4 dozen cookies

This recipe was tested by The Bee's Kathy Morrison using both regular and insulated cookie sheets, and the difference in the baked cookies was notable. The regular sheet produced a cakier cookie, while the insulated sheet resulted in a crunchy-chewy cookie that would go perfectly with tea.

The cookies don't spread much, so be sure to use a timer rather than visual clues.

The original recipe had just 1 cup of almonds, but tasters agreed that the cookies needed more, so the recipe now offers a range of nuttiness.

INGREDIENTS

1 to 2 cups sliced almonds

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar, plus more sugar for cookie tops

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

2 large eggs, room temperature

Zest from 1 large lemon or 2 small lemons

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

INSTRUCTIONS

Toast the almonds: Place the sliced almonds in a large, dry nonstick skillet and toast over medium heat, stirring or shaking pan frequently, until the nuts smell toasted but are not dark brown, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Make the dough: Beat butter and sugars with an electric mixer until fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well blended. Mix in the lemon zest and lemon juice.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and almonds. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture gradually, about one-third at a time, until thoroughly blended.

Cover and chill 8 hours or overnight.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare cookie sheet (insulated is preferred) with parchment paper.

Make cookies: Scoop out rounded tablespoons of dough, roll into walnut-size balls and place about 2 inches apart on parchment paper.

Put about 1/4 cup sugar in a small bowl. Grease the bottom of a glass and dip into the sugar, then flatten a dough ball to about 3/8 inch thickness; repeat for rest of dough.

Bake for 13-15 minutes or until cookies' edges are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.

Per cookie, using 1 cups of nuts, based on 48: 121 calories, 55 calories from fat (45% of total); 6 g fat (2.6 g sat.); 82 mg sodium; 7 g sugar; 18 mg chol.; 15 g carb.; 2 g protein; 1 g fiber.

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