Do you remember the last time that you were in the supermarket on the cookie aisle and you saw those very expensive cookies in the white bag? Well, the Almond and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies will definitely remind you of one of the more popular types, which will go unnamed! This is a crisp, thin cookie that’s delicious on it’s own, but incredible when sandwiched around a layer of semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate. It’s equally amazing with Nutella in the center.
The recipe is an adaptation of Julia Cookenboo’s Almond and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies from The Baker’s Dozen Cookbook.
The recipe calls for a cup of toasted whole natural almonds. It’s necessary to remove the almonds’ skins before toasting then. While a bit time-consuming, it’s really quite easy to remove the skins by first blanching the almonds in boiling water for 3 minutes. After they’ve been drained and cooled, the skins come right off!
Because they’ve been in water, the almonds are wet after their skins have been removed. If they’re wet when put in the 350° F oven for toasting, the almonds will need 15 to 20 minutes; if they’re toasted dry, then the almonds only need about 10 minutes.
Ingredients for Almond and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies:
Now for the cookie ingredients: Toasted almonds, sugar (divided), unsalted butter, baking powder, salt, Egg Beaters, vanilla extract and all-purpose flour. You can use a large egg in place of the Egg Beaters if you wish. The reason that I use Egg Beaters is that I can taste the cookie dough without worrying about getting sick from raw eggs. Part of the sugar is added to the almonds as they are ground; the other part of the sugar is added to the cookie dough.
The first thing that I did was to process the toasted almonds with 3 Tablespoons of sugar in the bowl of my food processor fitted with the chopping blade until they were finely ground. The sugar is added to keep the almonds from turning into a paste from releasing too much oil from the blade’s friction.
Making the Almond and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies:
Now for the actual cookie dough: I beat the room temperature butter with 3/4 cup of sugar until it was light and fluffy. I used my hand mixer for this on the high setting. This took around 3 minutes.
Then I added the baking powder, salt, egg beater and vanilla extract to the butter/sugar mixture, and continued beating on high until everything was well incorporated. I know that baking powder and salt are considered dry ingredients and that recipes traditionally call for sifting them with the flour. I always add them to the wet ingredients because I think that they stand a better chance of being evenly incorporated via the beating process.
Next, I added the ground almonds and beat the mixture on medium until it was smooth. Finally, I gradually beat in the flour on low-speed just until it was well mixed. Just to make sure that everything had been mixed, I gave the mixture several additional stirs with my scraper. The dough is very sticky, so it needs to be tightly covered and refrigerated for at least 2 hours before it is used.
I used my small disher (a.k.a. ice cream scoop) to portion out the dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet. The disher has a diameter of 1 1/8-inches. I think that it’s two teaspoons, but it could be 1 1/2 teaspoons. I wish that it would have some indication of actual size on it!
These cookies spread quite a bit, so I made sure that I left around 2-inches between the cookie mounds.
I baked the cookies at 350° F for around 12 minutes, or until they were lightly browned. When I removed them from the oven, I let the cookies cool for around 3 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack for final cooling.
After they were thoroughly cooled, I gently melted some semi-sweet chocolate chips in the microwave (20 second intervals at 50% power). Using a butter knife, I spread the melted chocolate on the underside of a cookie, and placed the underside of another cookie on top, i.e., sandwiched the cookies together.
I ended up with 4-dozen delicious individual cookies, or 2-dozen Almond and Chocolate Sandwich Cookies. Yum!
- 1 cup almonds skinned, toasted and cooled*
- 3/4 cup (6 ounces), plus 3 Tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 large egg or 1/4 cup Egg Beaters
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 3/4 cup (4 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 4 ounces semisweet chocolate
- In a food processor fitted with a chopping blade, process the almonds and 3 Tablespoons of the sugar until the almonds are finely ground. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, beat butter and remaining ¾ cup of sugar on medium speed until the mixture is light in color and texture, at least 3 minutes. Beat in the egg, vanilla extract, baking powder, and salt until well blended. Add the almond mixture, blending just until smooth. On low speed, gradually beat in the flour mixture just until smooth. Cover the dough tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until the dough is thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours or up to 5 days.
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Using a small disher, portion the dough into 48 pieces. Roll the dough into small balls; place about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake in center to top third of the oven until the cookies are lightly browned all over, 10 to 12 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 3 minutes. Carefully transfer to wire cooling racks and cool completely.
- In the top part of a double boiler over hot, not simmering, water, melt the chocolate. Alternatively, melt the chocolate in the microwave in 20 second increments on 50 power.
- Using a small icing spatula or knife, spread about 1/2 teaspoon on the underside of a cookie, then sandwich with another cookie, placing them back to back. When the chocolate has cooled and set, store cookies at room temperature in an airtight container. NOTE: Omit the chocolate filing to make an excellent wafer-type cookie. Yield: 4 dozen single cookies; 2 dozen sandwich cookies.
*Pecans can be used in place of almonds. If whole almonds with skin are used, blanch to remove the skins. To blanch, pour boiling water over almonds. Let stand for three minutes. Slip the skins off. To toast the nuts, spread them on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350° F oven for about 10 minutes. Processing the nuts with sugar keeps them from releasing too much oil from the blade's friction.