Tuesday, November 18, 2014

TWD: Baking with Julia - Amaretti

We made Amaretti this week with Baking with Julia!  Now, I have to admit, I had no idea what amaretti actually were when this recipe was chosen.  I  mean, I knew it had to contain almonds, but I had never heard of amaretti before.  Essentially it is an almond flavored macaron.

Here are my thoughts on amaretti:
1)  They are super easy to make.  Literally, there are 3 ingredients:  almond paste, sugar, egg whites.  Yes there is a pine nut on top so that is technically ingredient number 4 but it isn't actually IN the cookie, just pressed on top so I don't count that one.  It's essentially decoration.
2)  They are gluten-free for the many people who sadly cannot digest gluten well.
3)  Weird technique alert:  After piping the cookies onto the cookie sheet, you dab them with a wet tea-towel to smooth out the tops.  That's a new one for me!
4)  They are crisp on the outside and chewy inside.
5)  They are one of the weirdest cookies I have ever eaten.
6)  However, I can't stop eating them!  I am constantly lifting up the lid on their container and eating another one!!  And each time, I think, "huh, these are weird, but good, too!"

Truly, I think I would enjoy anything involving almond paste.  I love almond flavor so that is right up my alley.  If you DO NOT like almond flavor, these would NOT be the cookie for you!  But if you do, yum.  Get yourself a nice hot mug of tea and a couple of these cookies on a plate and put your feet up.  Well, only put your feet up if the cookie tin is nearby, so you don't have to get up to get more.  Because you might want to do that, and it would be a fat bummer to get all comfy with your cookies and tea and then  have to get up again just to get more!

I might try to reduce the sugar a bit in these next time.  And I am not sure if I really need the pine nut on top.  Why not a slivered almond?  Too much almond?  Maybe do a sprinkle of big-grain sugar?  

Check out the TWD blog under "LYL:  Amaretti" to see what the other bloggers thought about amaretti!


  1. the towel technique was new to me too-i always used a wet finger tip.

  2. These cookies are very popular in Italian bakeries! I bake them every Christmas! One of my favorites! When coated in pine nuts…they are known as pignoli cookies!

  3. pine nuts on top are a traditional touch, but I think that a slivered almonds would be equally good (and less expensive). glad you liked them!

  4. I had the same reflections! Unique but intriguing!

  5. I can't stop eating the amaretti either. I am glad you enjoyed them.

  6. Yup, these were hard to stop eating :-)

  7. I like the look of the single pine nut in the center. I used sliced almonds on some, powdered sugar on others, and left some plain. I enjoyed them all. Almond paste is the best, isn't it? These cookies were dangerously addictive!


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