Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Almond Strips

This is our new family Christmas tradition, if something can be a tradition that you did once two years ago, and then several times this year. People tend to think these cookies are biscotti when they see them, but they’re not as hard. Still, they are nice for dipping. Maybe we could call them “bis-NOT-ti.”
Taken with only a few tweaks from my trusty Better Homes & Gardens cookbook.

½ cup (1 stick) butter or margarine, softened
2/3 cup sugar (for the cookies in this picture, I used unpacked brown sugar)
2 t baking powder
1 egg
1 t almond extract
1 cup all-purpose (white) flour
¾ cup whole wheat flour
a little milk
½ cup sliced almonds, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven 325 F.
Beat butter with an electric mixer. Add sugar and baking powder; beat till combined. Beat in egg and almond extract till combined. Beat in as much of the flours as you can; stir in the remaining flour.
Divide dough into 4 equal portions. Shape each portion into a 12-inch-long roll. (I find that I can’t actually roll it out with my hands without its falling apart; it’s better to sort of gently squeeze and shape it.) Place 2 rolls 4 to 5 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Using your hands, slightly flatten each to 3 inches wide. Repeat with remaining rolls. Brush flattened rolls with milk and sprinkle with almonds.
Bake in a 325 oven for 15 minutes or till edges are lightly browned. Cut warm cookies diagonally into 1-inch strips. (Put on an oven mitt before you do this, or you may burn your hand on the edge of the cookie sheet as you cut them.) Cool cookies on wire racks. Makes about 40 cookies.