Chewy Almond Raspberry Cookies

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This time of year it seems that cookie recipes are everywhere. And I want to bake them all. 
I really should start my holiday baking in October so I have time to try all the recipes I bookmark, because there just isn’t enough time in December. Between getting the tree and decorations up, shopping for gifts, sending out packages, and trying to stay sane through it all, I’m lucky if I’m able to try more than a few new recipes.
Almonds and Paste

The December issue of Bon Appetit came and sure enough, there was a section dedicated to cookie recipes. They all looked amazing, but one particular recipe caught my eye, and I put these Chewy Almond Raspberry Cookies at the top of my “must bake” list for the season.
Piping out cookies
Fresh from the oven

The ingredients for these cookies are simple enough— just almond paste, sugar, egg whites, almonds, and some cinnamon. They’re fairly simple to throw together, but can be a little messy to pipe out and transfer to the baking sheet. Thankfully, these cookies don’t need to look perfect. It’s part of their charm.

Jammin'


I almost didn’t sandwich them with raspberry jam, as they are scrumptious enough on their own. They’re chock full of almonds and almond flavor. But then I sampled one with the jam and knew why they were paired, the match was even more scrumptious.

These cookies will be a delicious addition to your probably already long list of baked goods for the holiday season, whether you decide to give them away or keep them all to yourself. I won’t judge you either way.

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Chewy Almond Raspberry Cookies
Adapted from Bon Appetit, December 2010
Makes 2 dozen sandwich cookies

7 ounces (1 tube) almond paste*
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large egg whites
2 1/2-3 cups sliced almonds
Powdered sugar
1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam**

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper. Place the sliced almonds in a third unlined sheet pan and set aside.

In a food processor, pulse together the almond paste, sugar, cinnamon, and egg whites until smooth. Spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a medium plain tip and pipe into 2 inch strips onto the almonds in the sheet pan. Use your hand to cover the tops of each with more almonds.

Use a small offset spatula and carefully move each cookie strip onto the lined sheet pans (The dough is soft and sticky, so be gentle. If it gets smooshed too much, just smooth it back out. The almonds are great at covering up imperfections).

Bake until lightly golden brown, about 12 minutes. Let cool on the pan for a few minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, sprinkle with powdered sugar and sandwich together with the strawberry jam.

*Can’t find almond paste in your grocery store? Neither could I. I found this substitution and it worked beautifully.

Almond Paste

1 3/4 cup almonds
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 large egg white
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a food processor, pulse all ingredients until smooth. Continue with recipe above.

**I also have trouble finding seedless raspberry jam. To “de-seed” jam, just warm it over low heat in a saucepan over the stove, and strain it through a mesh sieve. Return it to it’s jar or container (and be upset that you just reduced your amount of jam by a third).