Cookies or biscuits are so wonderful with a cup of tea or coffee. They are so handy to serve unexpected guests and if you are hungry then just bite into a couple of them. Cookies are non greasy and non messy so they are easy to carry at work, school or while you are travelling. There are umpteen varieties which are uniquely special. Homemade cookies or biscuits are deliciously fresh and fun to bake. Who would not want to enjoy homemade cookies/biscuits?
While arranging my pantry, I found fruits and nuts which I had shopped for during Christmas. I used the almonds to bake these awesome cookies and discovered a nice way of enjoying the almonds. Not to forget, they do make excellent gifts!
These beautiful Almond Cookies are so simple, easy and quick to bake. They are wholesome and nutritious. These one bowl cookies require very few ingredients which are easily available. They are light, delicately crisp and not overly sweet. Filled with the goodness of almonds, they are healthy and fresh straight from your oven!
I got about 2 dozen Almond Cookies. The number of cookies depends on the shape, thickness and size you wish to choose. Go ahead and try this one… They did not last long in my cookie jar so that is a clear indicator that my family relished them!
420 gms. (sifted) Maida/All Purpose Flour
225 gms. unsalted Butter @ room temperature
200 gms. Confectioner’s Sugar/Icing Sugar
125 gms. blanched ground Almonds
1 Egg Yolk
½ tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Almond Essence (optional)
1 tsp. Almond Essence (optional)
To beautify your delicious Almond Cookies:
2 Egg Yolks – for Egg Wash
Blanched & halved Almonds – for Decoration (optional)
Combine sifted flour, salt and sift once again.
In a sufficiently large bowl, combine butter, egg yolk and confectioner’s sugar. Beat until the mixture is soft, creamy and pale.
Add ground almonds, essence if using and mix well.
Add flour mixture; a little at a time and blend to form a dough.
Divide the dough into 4 balls. Flatten each ball of dough into a disc. Wrap each ball of dough in cling film and chill for 20 mins. or until firm enough to handle while rolling out. Do not over chill or it will be difficult to roll the pastry.
Roll out each disc of dough to a ¼ inch thickness on a lightly floured rolling board with a lightly floured rolling pin. Cut the dough into desired shapes using a cookie cutter dipped in dry flour.
Place the cookie cut outs on a baking tray lined with ungreased parchment paper. You may place them close to each other with very less space between them as they do not have a tendency to spread out.
Lightly break the egg yolks in a bowl. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the top of each cookie with the yolk wash. Gently press 2 blanched almonds or as many as you wish into the top of each cookie to decorate.
Bake in a preheated oven at 175 C. until the cookies are lightly golden. It took about 8 mins in my oven to get them beautifully lightly golden. (It depends on the thickness of the cookie and individual oven settings).
Let the cookies cool for a few seconds before transferring to a cooling rack with a metal spatula. Cool completely before eating and storing.
Tips & Suggestions:
For perfectly baked cookies, it is a good idea to bake a few before baking a large batch of cookies. Always keep a watch while baking because there is a tendency to burn.
The shape, size, addition of dry fruits and individual oven temperature settings are an important aspect to consider to get perfect and uniformly baked cookies.
To Blanch Almonds : Place shelled almonds with skin in boiling water for about 3-5 mins. Drain out the water. While almonds are still warm, press each almond between your thumb and forefinger to slide the skin off the almond. Place on absorbent towels to drain excess water if any.