We wanted a treat to bring down to some friends, but we were getting bread dough together so we wanted something quick and easy. Quick and easy is good. Now, we’d also like it to be good. And since we knew of at least one person who was gluten intolerant, we thought if we could only find a fast, easy, tasty, gluten-free treat, we’d be all set. Well, it may not seem likely, but there is such a treat.We read about the cookies in Dorie Greenspan’s book Paris Sweets, and any sweet from Paris has to be good, right? As it turns out, these are very good, partly because, like many sweets associated with Paris, they aren’t too sweet. Here in the US, we might overload our treats with sugar and salt, but elsewhere they think other flavors should take the forefront. As you’ll see, something this easy shouldn’t be this good.
Makes 24 cookies
- 8 ounces blanched almonds
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 egg whites
- 3-4 drops almond extract (optional)
Nothing much here, right? The blanched almonds are those with the skins removed. You could probably use unblanched almonds; they’d just have brown flecks in them.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Process almonds and sugar. Put the almonds and the cup of sugar into the bowl of a food processor, add the almond extract, if using, and flip it on. Let the food processor grind those almonds into a fine meal, about 2 minutes. If need be, scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Add egg whites. While the processor is running, add the egg whites and process for about 30 seconds.
Portion dough. Scoop out level tablespoons of the batter onto baking sheets that have been lined with baking parchment or silicone sheets (trust us, you do want to line the sheets).
Bake for 18-20 minutes. Rotate the sheets from front to back and from top to bottom halfway through baking. The cookies will puff up a bit, the tops will be dry, and the edges will have just begun to turn brown.
Remove from sheets. Using a wide metal spatula, slide each cookie off and unto a cooling rack. Let cool completely, then taste. Go ahead, close you eyes and pretend you’re in Paris.
These are so easy! It takes us 30 minutes from start to finish, including clean-up. And they are a really good cookie, a bit chewy, a little sweet, and bursting with almond flavor. We give ’em five stars. Oh, you might want to check out Dorie’s book, too; she has several suggestions to vary these cookies.