Panini Girl

My obsessions-Italy and Cooking

September 17, 2013


Next Stop Lucca


In just a few days I’ll be able to walk into a pasticceria in Lucca and order my favoite little pastries. In the meantime I whipped up a batch of theses delectable cookies from Gina De Palma’s book Dolce Italiano to hold me over until I get there. I’ve made quite a few recipes from this book with great success, but I think that these may be my favorite since they instantly transport me back to Italy.

Be sure to check back and spend time with me in lovely Lucca. The adventure begins this Saturday. Maybe next time you should come along with me…

Almond Fingers
2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup almond flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg, separated

Freshly grated zest of 1 lemon

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 cups blanched, sliced almonds

In a bowl whisk together the flour, almond flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.

Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the egg yolk, followed by the lemon zest and vanilla extract, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Beat in the dry ingredients on low speed to make a stiff dough. Remove the dough from the bowl, flatten into a disk, wrap in plastic and chill until it is firm, about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment (or butter them). Place the almonds in a bowl. In another shallow bowl, lightly beat the egg white with a fork until frothy.

Divide the dough into three equal pieces. Work with 1 piece at a time, keeping the others wrapped and refrigerated. Roll the piece of dough into a narrow log 1/2″ in diameter. Cut the log into cylinders about 1-1/2 ” long. Roll each cylinder into egg white and then into sliced almonds to coat. Place on prepared sheets, spacing them about 1/2″ apart. Repeat with remaining dough.

Bake the cookies until they are firm and the almonds are lightly golden brown, 14-16 minutes, rotating the sheets 180 degrees halfway through the baking time. Allow the cookies to cool on sheets for 1-2 minutes, then use a spatula to remove them gently to a wire rack to cool completely. Dust the cookies generously with confectioners sugar. Yield: about 4 dozen

9 thoughts on “Next Stop Lucca

  1. Beautiful! I just love that book. It is filled with wonderful things, and these look delightful. I would like two please! The photo is wonderful.

  2. Look forward to following you in Lucca via Panini Girl…You inspired me to get my Dolce Italiano book out and make something…thank you!!!

  3. How long will you be in Lucca? I arrive in Bagni di Lucca on the evening of 3rd October.

  4. These look absolutely delicious! Enjoy your Italian pastries – they always taste so good there, don’t they? I especially love the cornettos filled with marmalade…yummy! I look forward to reading about your time in Lucca!

  5. If you’re coming down to Arezzo for the day, Mario and I will be ready!

  6. Yum. I will try these. I plan to be in Lucca in about 8 months. I Iook forward to your posts from there

  7. Have a pastry or three for me Janie. Buon viaggio!! I know you’ll have a brilliant time. Make the most of every mouthful! un abbraccio. Jx

  8. Avere un tempo favoloso in Italia. Desiderio, che ero con te.

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