Soft, chewy and very addictive; these super simple cookies can be flavoured with orange or lemon zest and finely diced dried sour cherries or golden raisins make a great alternative to the apricots.
1½ cups (140 grams) ground almonds
½ cup caster sugar
pinch sea salt
finely grated zest 1 orange
¼ cup finely chopped dried apricots
2 x egg whites, size 7 (large)
⅓ cup caster sugar
⅓ cup icing sugar
flat baking tray lined with baking paper
Preheat the oven to 160°C (fan bake).
Put the ground almonds, caster sugar, salt and orange zest in a medium bowl. Using your fingertips, rub the zest into the mixture to infuse with the orange oil. Stir in the apricots.
Whisk the egg whites in a separate bowl until foamy and just starting to form soft peaks. Don’t overbeat the whites. Add to the almond mixture and stir to make a soft dough.
To assemble: Put the caster sugar and icing sugar into separate shallow dishes. Scoop out a small spoonful of the dough and roll into a ball in the palm of your hands. (Lightly wet your hands with cold water). You should have 20 balls. Roll in the caster sugar then in the icing sugar.
Place on the baking tray and sprinkle over a little extra icing sugar before baking. Bake for 25 minutes or until a light golden colour, turning the tray for even browning. Makes 20
Pantry note: Ground almonds can also be labelled almond meal, almond powder or almond flour. It’s simply ground up almonds and if in doubt, check the ingredients; the only one should be almonds. If unavailable, put 140 grams whole blanched almonds and the sugar in a food processor and grind finely.