While I continue my baking rut wherein I can’t think of any recipe I’d really like to adapt or develop from scratch at the moment, I am still chugging along with my resolution of baking a new cookie from Dorie’s wonderful book (provided I’m home for the weekend).
These little buggers were literally the first page I flipped to when I first opened the book, and I wanted to make them right away. Except you need egg whites and almond flour and I had neither on hand at the moment. So I put them off for a week.
I plunked down to make them about three weeks ago and the first batch turned out atrociously. It just so happens that I am apparently a terrible judge of size, and when she says to pipe them to about the size of a quarter, I approximated that to be a rather generous half dollar… or larger. Thus they baked up chewy instead of crisp, and while delicious, were not a biarritz.
Honestly these should be very similar in texture to a milano cookie, but obviously smaller and thinner. So I handed these out to friends and family while I made a second attempt. Not being one to be bested by a cookie I made them that same weekend again, after having returned from an epic weekend of painting a friend’s home and learning (but not quite mastering) Pandemic, and a little bit of hungover climbing to boot.
Quick detour: have you played Pandemic? The Onion had a wonderful article that sums it up pretty accurately. I really would advise that you be sober the first three (hundred) times you play. And if you really like strategy games and/or are bossy as all get out, then you’ll love it. But the learning curve is steep.
Back to cookies. I wouldn’t say that I quite mastered these little buggers. Mine never quite crisped up the way Dorie says they should. Though I imagine that has something to do with my oven and not her instructions. I really need to replace my oven thermometer.
I’m providing the recipe for these bad boys via The Spiced Life who appears to have made them for a cookie exchange around the holidays. The flavors in these really are delicious. Perhaps you’ll have better luck than I.
- ¾ cup (75 grams) fine ground almond flour (also called almond meal)
- ½ cup plus 1 tbsp (75 grams) flour
- ½ cup plus 2 tbsp (75 grams) powdered sugar
- ¼ cup (1/2 stick, 4 tbsp) butter, melted and cooled
- 3 tbsp whole milk, room temperature
- 3 large egg whites, room temperature
- 3 tbsp sugar
- 4½ oz dark chocolate (not chips), roughly chopped
- 3 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tsp light corn syrup
- Pre-heat oven to 325F and line a baking sheet with a silpat (which will make for smoother cookie bottoms) or parchment and set aside.
- Place a sieve over a large bowl and sift the flours and powdered sugar through.
- Mix the melted butter and milk together in a measuring cup and power over the dry ingredients. Blend with a spatula until smooth.
- In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer beat the egg whites on medium-high until they are foamy and start to turn white. Slowly with the mixer still running, add the sugar in a steady stream and beat until the whites form stiff, glossy peaks.
- Scoop ⅓ of the white mixture into the flour mixture and and stir vigorously with the spatula to loosen the batter.
- Pour the rest of the whites into the batter and fold them in quickly "using a bit more energy" according to Dorie, until you have a smooth batter. It's okay if the whites deflate a little.
- In a large ziplock bag with the corner snipped or in a pastry bag fitted with ½ inch plain tip scoop half the batter. Pipe QUARTER sized rounds (or smaller) spacing them about 1½ to 2 inches apart.
- Rap the pan on the counter a few times to flatten the mounds (which will help them bake crisp) and remove some of the bubbles.
- Bake for 19 - 22 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking, until the edges are a deep brown but the centers are still pale.
- Transfer the entire sheet to a rack to cool completely.
- In a large microwave safe bowl add the chocolate and cream and melt in 15 second increments stirring between each interval. Do not overheat the chocolate, you still want it to be a bit thick so it doesn't ooze out of the sandwiches.
- Stir in the corn syrup and let the mixture cool a little until it's not so runny.
- Pair up the cookies by size, coat the bottom of one and sandwich them together. Let the cookies rest on a baking sheet until the chocolate firms up a bit. Serve immediately.