~ "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; Through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures." ~ "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing" ~ "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." ~ "Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths."~

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Apricot Almond Cookies...Giada's Recipe Adaptation

Apricot Almond Cookies... adaptation of Giada De Laurentiis's Recipe ...First of all, I have to apologize for the not so great picture. I happened to make them in the evening and being a cloudy day, I didn't get the best shot. Regardless of the picture not doing the cookie justice, I really liked this cookie. Since I LOVED Giada's ricotta cookies , I decided to try her Apricot and Nut with Amaretto Icing cookie recipe.It had great reviews, so I was up for trying it....hoping it would be somewhat of a decent cookie. If you like amaretto, you will like this cookie. This cookie sort of reminds me of a biscotti. If you will notice, there is no leavening agent. So, don't expect to get soft, fluffy cookies. I didn't have any pine nuts around and so I used all almonds. Also, I used apricots from the whole foods store...they don't have the preservatives added to them, therefore the brownish color. I didn't have any amaretto liqueur so I used some almond extract and a bit of milk. If you don't care for the amaretto, you might add some orange zest instead. Though, I think next time I will dip half of the cookie in chocolate/white chocolate. I think it will look rather pretty and I am sure it will taste great! Well, here is the link to Giada's cookie recipe...click here. If you want a different cookie, you just might like this.

Note: I made a second variation, by using roasted macadamia nuts with cranberries... and skipped the icing. They were a crisp, biscotti-style cookie. I loved them! You will notice updated photos.

Ingredients: adapted from Giada De Laurentiis1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup dried apricots, coarsely chopped
1/4 + 2 TBS cup slivered almonds, toasted*
* you can substitute the 2 tablespoons of slivered almonds with toasted pine nuts

1 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4-1/2 tsp almond extract + milk*
* this can be substituted with 5 to 7 tablespoons almond flavored liqueur (recommended: Amaretto)

Directions:Toast your nuts, if they are not toasted, in a dry skillet.
Watch so as not to burn them. They go from golden brown to burnt rather quickly.Dice your apricots. Place them in a small container. Proceed with the recipe.
In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt until light and fluffy. It should take you about 2 minutes. Beat in the egg and mix until combined. Stir in the flour until just blended.
Don't over mix. Mix in the apricots, almonds( and pine nuts ,if using).
Transfer the dough to a sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a log, about 12-inches long and 1 1/2-inches in diameter. Wrap the dough in the plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours or freeze for use later.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 heavy baking sheets with parchment paper.
Cut the dough log crosswise into 1/4 to 1/2 inch-thick slices. I cut mine at a slight angle to sort of mimic a miniature biscotti.
Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing evenly apart. Bake until the cookies are golden around the edges, about 15 minutes.
Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely before icing.

For the Icing: Place the confectioners' sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Gradually whisk in the almond extract and a bit of milk ( or almond flavored liqueur), until the mixture is of drizzling consistency.
Place the wire rack over a baking sheet. Using a spoon or fork, drizzle the cookies with the icing, allowing any excess icing to drip onto the baking sheet. Allow the icing to set before serving, about 30 minutes.


Anonymous said...

With all the changes/ommissions you made, you really did not make these particular cookies.

Ellie said...

Anon, Yes, I did make a couple of changes...which I mentioned in my intro and later in my directions.
You are right, I should have mentioned the changes in the actual recipe as well...I went back and added it. Thank you for stopping by.

Anonymous said...

I used the recipe and made the following adaptations:

1) replaced cinnamon with 1 tbsp orange zest
2) replaced apricots with dried cranberries
3) replaced all nuts with toasted chopped pistachios
4) made the glaze with Grand Marnier as the liquid and a pinch more orange zest.

Both versions are stunning!

Ellie said...

Anon, Thanks for your feedback on the cookies.
I absolutely love your substitutions...and love orange zest in almost everything!
I'm thinking the pistachio addition would make the cookies look really pretty.
I am so glad you liked the cookies... and thanks for stopping by.