fat free opinions on a food centric life

Chocolate Almond Dipped Sandwich Cookies

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Last year at this time, our house was completely torn up due to a remodel.  When left to consider where I might set up shop while all of the dust, noise, and construction workers took over, it didn’t take long to decide that if I moved my Mac down to the kitchen, I’d be just fine.  It would mean that I could cook, shoot photos, then pass samples among the crew for critique before settling in to write about what I was busy making: cookies.  This isn’t completely out of place if one considers that it is December, and many cooks do bake cookies for the holidays.  But do they bake in the middle of what seemed to be a disaster zone at the time, and at the pace of one cookie per day?  “The 12 Days of Cookies:  A Gourmet cookie extravaganza” was born.

It doesn’t sound as crazy now that a year has passed, but the time has arrived to bake more cookies.  Sandy of At the Baker’s Bench has invited those of us who participated last year to join in on the cookie baking frenzy once again along with a few new participants.  Instead of choosing recipes from Gourmet, we are making Bon Appetit our source for recipes, but since I have a tendency to deviate from the norm, I just may select a recipe here or there for consideration as well.

The goal is to bake 12 cookies, posting one each day for 12 days.  Since this involves far less of a commitment than making 101 of Mark Bittman’s Simple Salads, I think I’ll be just fine — especially since there is not one construction worker in sight.  I’m happy to say that I’ll bake with quite a fine group of individuals:  Claire of The Barefoot Kitchen, Courtney of Coco Cooks, and Judy of No Fear Entertaining who are all returning this year, and Michelle of Big Black Dog, Di of Di’s Kitchen Notebook, Renee of Flamingo Musings, and Tiffany of The Nesting Project who will be joining us this year.  A special nod goes to Andrea of Andrea’s Recipes who started the group last year, but cannot join in on the craziness this year.

Are you ready?

Chocolate Almond Dipped Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate and Almond Dipped Sandwich Cookies

For the cookies…

  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

For the filling…

  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 12 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped garnish
  • 6 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups slivered almonds (about 5 ounces), toasted, chopped

The directions can be found here.

Chocolate Almond Dipped Sandwich Cookies

Notes:

  • I made the cookie dough as written and kept it in the fridge overnight before cutting with 3″ rounds.
  • My cookies appeared to want to do the dreaded spread while baking, but stopped before disaster.  The edges aren’t as clean as I would have liked, but the cookie is very tasty, so I’ll forgive the recipe.
  • I decided to dip the cookies into shaved almonds instead of the blanched almonds the recipe calls for.  They’re attractive.  Not exactly holiday-looking, but they’re the first ones to disappear from a platter of three other types.  I rest my case.
  • Do I need to say that you could fill these with just about any kind of ganache or buttercream?  Dulce de leche?  Then your mind can spin out of control on what you’d like to dip them in.
  • Of course, you might just eat all of them warm from the oven, avoid the messy dipping, and call it a meal.
  • Oh.  My.  I’d say we’re off to a fabulous beginning.