Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Almond Butter Cookies

This is my paper (cardboard) recipe for the week! So far, I've done this, knitted every night, and am almost done with Wicked. I'm totally on schedule.

I found this recipe on the back of a Publix butter container and kept because it looked simple and delicious. But before we get into that, I'd like to introduce you to my cookie press.

I'm pretty sure this one came from a thrift shop. It's pretty old-fashioned. I don't know of any way to tell if it's actually old, but it's not really a cookie press- more like a cookie drill. Kinda?

See the threading? You twist the handle down and it presses them out. This is the one I had in mind when I wanted to make Spritz cookies, but apparently I have another cookie press, also bought at a thrift store, that I had forgotten about. Now that one is old. Look at the package! It's so cool.

Moving on. I've never used a press before, though I'd seen my mom do it lots of times. So of course I thought I was an expert. Sigh. I planned to use this pretty tree shape. It wasn't until I pressed out the first cookie that I realized I was an idiot and put the nozzle on too, so yeah, no tree shapes. Still, it wasn't so bad.

Note to self: Buy Silpat.

They were smaller than recommended in the recipe, so they baked in only 8 minutes. Despite the dodgy appearance on my blackened baking pans, they slide off like it was nothing. Seriously, not one bit of sticking. I couldn't believe it. However, not all of them were as pretty. Some of the dough got left behind in the press.

I simply rolled them out and added a sliver of almond. The recipe called for frosting, which looked good, but wasn't needed on pressed cookies. They taste just fine without it. I grew up with mom making these every Christmas, and the dry crumb of these cookies remind me of that every time I bite into one. I would definitely recommend this as an easy recipe with what you've got on hand. I'm very happy with the way these baked up and how they turned out. Two thumbs up.

Almond Butter Cookies

3/4 c butter, softened
1/2 c sugar
1 egg
1 tsp almond extract
2 c all-purpose flour

Frosting (optional)

2 T melted butter
1 1/4 c confectioner's sugar
1 tsp almond extract
1-2 T milk
sliced almonds

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Cream butter and sugar until creamy. Add egg and almond extract, mix well. Gradually add sifted flour and mix well.

2. Time to form the cookies. Either use your press or roll dough into 2 inch balls. Dip a flat-bottomed glass into sugar and use it to flatten the dough balls.

3. Bake 8-9 minutes for small pressed cookies, up to 10-12 minutes for drop cookies. Let cool completely.

4. If you're going to frost the cookies, combine butter, sugar, and almond extract until smooth in a small bowl. Stir in milk, as needed, until frosting is spreading consistency. Spread on each cookie and top with an almond slice. Toasting almonds will bring out the flavor more, but it's an easy extra step. Also, you can add extra milk and drizzle frosting instead of spreading.

Makes about 4 dozen rolled cookies.

I have a test at 8 am tomorrow, so I'll probably start the bagging after that. I'm afraid I'll miss my teachers if I try to give them the cookies by just catching them during finals, but I feel like giving them cookies during a final is almost a bribe. It's weird. So hopefully, all my teachers will still be on campus when I try to get them.


Mary said...

I love spritz cookies! I have a "super shooter" cookie press and Kelly Ripa's grandmother's recipe (thanks Good Housekeeping!).

Yours look great by the way! Good luck on your test!

Mariana said...

I think that first press was mine, Baby. Gran had given me that Pampered Chef one- which I hate!!! and I think I gave you the old one(??) These look really good for a first timer. The trick with pressed cookies is in knowing how much to press out and in how long you should let them brown. They need only enough baking time to just lightly golden the undersides. That butter is a tricksy thing! In can burn in a heartbeat unless you watch it closely.
Yes, Spritz are on the baking list this year as always! So, there will be more for you to bring home when you get up here. I may? just try this recipe since you've given it a (how many?) thumbs up?
Oh and what is a "silpat"??