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Florentiners À  la Mama

Author: Gesine Bullock-Prado

Florentines are crisp, delicate, lacy cookies made of cooked sugar and nuts. Their buttery sugar texture shatters on the tongue; and their toasty nut flavor is irresistible. The dessert equivalent of potato chips, it's impossible to eat just one. Luckily, these recipe makes a large batch of super-thin, super-rich cookies.

King Arthur friend and guest baking instructor Gesine Bullock-Prado was kind enough to share this recipe from her book, Sugar Baby. They were a particular favorite of her mother's when traveling in Bavaria.

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At a glance

Prep
Bake
Total
Yield
about 40 drop cookies, or 20 molded cookies

Ingredients

Choose your measure:

  • 2 cups sliced almonds, blanched preferred
  • 1/4 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped bittersweet chocolate for drizzling, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a food processor, grind together 1 1/2 cups of the almonds, the flour, and the salt. Take care not to turn the almonds to flour or paste; there should still be visible bits of nut. Pour into a medium-sized heatproof bowl and stir in the remaining 1/2 cup of sliced nuts. Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan set over low heat, combine the sugar, honey, heavy cream, and butter. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook the mixture to 235°F, about 5 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently. The mixture will change color only slightly, becoming a creamy, buttery color.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and immediately pour the hot sugar over the almond/flour mixture. Stir until well combined. Let cool for a moment, then stir in the almond extract.
  5. Scoop the warm batter by teaspoonfuls onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. If you use our teaspoon scoop, your finished cookies will spread to about 5". For smaller cookies, use a regular from-the-table teaspoon.
  6. Be sure to leave 2" to 3" between scoops, as this batter will definitely spread; 4 to 6 scoops per half-sheet pan (large baking sheet) works well.
  7. Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes, until they're golden brown. Watch the first batch carefully, as they can scorch if baked too long.
  8. If you prefer perfectly round Florentiners, you can use greased English muffin rings. Place the greased rings on parchment-lined baking sheets, filling with approximately 2 tablespoons of batter. Bake at 350°F for about 15 to 18 minutes.
  9. Once the cookies are cooled, melt the bittersweet chocolate and drizzle over each cookie for a finishing touch, if desired. Yields approximately 40 drop cookies or 20 molded cookies
  10. Store cool, dry and airtight for up to one week.