Thursday, January 27, 2011

Almond Cookies


Finally! I finally managed to do some cookies Chinese New Year cookies. My idea is to work on either cashew cookies or almond cookies for a start and I settled on the latter. This almond cookie recipe requires no butter but uses oil instead. Hmm.. no butter? I normally wouldn't go for cookies that are butterless. No harm trying out the recipe since the dough seems easy to make with no creaming required. The best part about making it is that the dough requires no chilling at all!


It wasn't such a bad idea working on these cookies. Even though they lacked the buttery fragrance, the cookies tasted decently nutty and crunchy. After a few days of storage, they still keep their crunch really well. Neat! With the absence of butter, these cookies do not prove to be overly rich to the palate. I do find it a good change from the usual rich buttery cookies that are abound during the Chinese New Year period.

I know it is less than a week to Chinese New Year. I am still holding on to the possibility that I might be opening my 'mini pineapple tart factory' before sunday. Its either pineapple tarts or butter cakes, see how it goes... This might possibly be my final post before CNY, so I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Chinese New Year! Huat ar!

Note:  I will be attempting to improve on the recipe. Find that there is a little something lacking in its taste. Texture wise it is pretty good. Will try to either do a butter version or substitute part of the flour with same weight of ground almond to improve the flavour.

Almond Cookies (recipe adapted from Delicious Nyonya Kueh and Desserts by Patricia Lee)
Serving size: about 50 cookies, fills one small CNY plastic cookie tub
Taste and Texture: Crunchy-crumbly, nutty, non-buttery
Equipment and materials:
1) Mixing bowl
2) Flour sieve
3) Baking/cookie trays
4) Wire rack
5) Measuring spoon set
6) Baking paper
7) Wire whisk

Ingredients:
120g diced almonds, toasted
220g plain flour (try substituting some plain flour with same weight of ground almond for richer flavour)
100g icing sugar
105g corn oil
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt + a pinch more
2 egg yolks for eggwash

Making the dough:
Toasting the almonds: Place diced almonds in a single layer on a tray lined with baking paper. Toast the diced almonds at 160 degrees C for 20- 25 minutes until lightly browned. This will improve the fragrance of the almonds.

Prepare dry ingredients: Sift flour, icing sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a large mixing bowl. Mix dry ingredients evenly with a wire whisk. Add in the almonds and mix well.

Forming the dough: Add corn oil to the dry ingredients. Gather the mixture to form a dough. Gently knead the dough to incorporate dough crumbs.

Shaping cookies: Roll cookie dough between 2 pieces of baking paper to about 1cm thick. Cut out cookies with desired cutters. Gather scraps and continue cutting out dough until dough is used up.

Baking the cookies: Brush eggwash onto cut out cookie dough. Bake cookies at 160 degrees C for about 20 minutes. Remove baked cookies and allow them to cool on wire rack completely before storing in air-tight containers.

Notes:
1) Try substituting some of the flour with ground almond for richer flavour. This may make the cookie melt-in-the mouth since there is less gluten due to less flour used.
2) Cookies taste better the next day.

18 comments:

  1. Nice cookies ... My colleague let me tried something like yours yesterday.

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  2. Just did a batch of pineapple tarts yesterday, going to do my last batch this weekend. Although I'm not a fan of almond cookies, your recipe looks interesting. I've not come across a cookie recipe without butter too.

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  3. Pretty almond cookies~ all time favourites =)

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  4. so i finally get to see the legendary non-butter almond cookies. good work! i like how golden the egg wash looks on the cookies :D

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  5. those almond cookies look yummy and pretty! (: (: i like this! is without butter! (:

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  6. Those cookies look so delicate and flaky. I love their golden color. I have a linky party on my blog every week called "Sweets for a Saturday" and I'd like to invite you to stop by this weekend and link this up.

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  7. Hey ZY, nice almond cookies there! Btw, may I suggest using ghee (clarified butter) next time instead of vegetable oil? That is what I did that my almond cookies taste buttery good and still that melty, crunchy texture. :)

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  8. hey chris,

    how did you find the cookies? I'm thinking of tweaking the recipe to improve on it.

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    hey KWF,

    I noticed quite a few recipes on the net using oil for almond cookies. It seem to be less common
    for other cookies such as cashew nuts and peanut cookies. will be attempting to use butter and tweak the recipe. see how it turns out.

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    hi Lisa,

    I am afraid I will be give it a miss. Thanks for the invite =]

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    hey bee bee,

    ghee would be a nice substitute. I am thinking of doing the butter version of this cookie using either the rub in method or creaming method. btw this cookie is totally crunchy and not melty at all.

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  9. Hi ZY, you've a great lunar new year! Nice almond cookies you've got!

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  10. Zhuoyuan,
    Wishing you a happy and prosperous lunar new year!

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  11. ZY Wish you and your family a Happy Lunar New Year, Gong Xi Fa Cai!

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  12. Happy CNY to you and family, Bakertan. :)

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  13. Oh, u didn't join Aspiring Bakers? I thought you did. Remember to join next time ok. Happy Rabbit Year to you! Gong Xi Fa Cai! :)

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  14. K. My turn now to wish you:

    恭喜發財!揚眉『兔』氣!年年有餘!發呀!

    Nice almond cookies btw. =)

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  15. Zhou Yuan,
    I have yet to try it, but seems these cookies very popular during festive season. Yours look yummy!
    Here's wishing you and your family a Happy and Prosperous New Year!

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  16. Happy lunar new year to u and your family!

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  17. Dear blogger friends,

    Thanks for the wishes. May you have a prosperous Chinese New Year too! Huat ar =]

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    Hey SSB,

    I didnt submit this time because I am not satisfied with my almond cookies and my favourite pineapple tarts are not up yet, haha. will try to make it in time for the next one =]

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Thank you and have a nice day! Cheers =]

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