With this recipe for Pignoli – Almond Pine Nuts Cookies, I’m solemnly opening my Christmas season.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…not yet indeed. And personally, I don’t mind if the snow season starts somewhere about Christmas and finishes right after New Year celebration. Besides, I don’t really need to feel Christmas outside – I will compensate any weather issues with a lot of Christmas ideas.
I’m always excited about the Christmas treats not only because you can indulge yourself (However, hopefully, this time, unlike the previous years, I can find the perfect balance and avoid overeating and putting on more than two pounds. Do you think it’s even possible?)
To me, Christmas season is one of the most beautiful times for me as a food blogger as I can bring in a little of magic on my blog. Yes, even though our house has not been decorated yet, I’ve already pulled some Christmas ornaments from the boxes because they’re going to be my favorite props for the next few weeks. Also, although I have a good collection of different festive ribbons and other accessories, I felt like upgrading it a bit. Seriously, I might not need any presents under the tree, but Christmas without some sparkling props isn’t the real Christmas season.
However, it’s always a little hard to find your inspiration, so normally my first pictures ain’t too merry (Besides, this year I’ve opted for the combination of cozy and festive looks for my photographs. I guess I’m getting old). But please stay tuned – I’m pretty sure you’ll find something you like.
Pignoli – Almond Pine Nuts Cookies
Pignoli – Almond Pine Nuts Cookies are absolutely scrumptious Italian cookies. I am not sure if they’re exclusively the Christmas treats. On the other hand, both almond paste and pine nuts are expensive ingredients which makes these cookies the luxurious food. Since Christmas holidays are the perfect time to be a little extravagant, I consider this recipe a Christmas one. Does this make sense?
I’m not sure if this is an authentic recipe either. The original recipe doesn’t call for any flour, but because this was my first time making these cookies (and because I erroneously stirred a little more than 1/2 of the egg whites), I was concerned about the dough being tacky…and I ended up adding in 2 tablespoons of almond meal. I hope this didn’t alter the texture too much. Perhaps, I need to make these cookies again, without adding any flour. Just to compare.
If you ask me about the texture, it’s fantastic, my friends! It has a moist and soft interior and chewy exterior. They reminded my macarons and amaretto cookies. Doesn’t this sound just perfect?
Yes, it does.
So please splurge on and make these Pignoli – Almond Pine Nuts Cookies, my friends. But please don’t leave any for Santa (He will be fine with less expensive but delicious ones. Like these Cranberry Pecan Cookies)
- 1 and 1/4 cups almond paste (around 11-12 ounces)*
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 egg whites, divided
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar
- about 1 and 1/2 cup pine nuts
- In a small bowl, beet the almond paste and sugar until resemble crumbles.
- Beat in 1/2 of the egg whites.
- Gradually add the confectioner's sugar and mix well.
- Whisk the remaining egg whites in a little bowl, 20 second.
- Place the pine nuts in another shallow bowl.
- Shape dough into a walnut size balls. Roll in the egg whites and coat with the pine nuts.
- Place 2-2,5 cm apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Flatten slightly.
- Bake at 165-170 degrees C for about 15-18 minutes or until lightly browned.
- Remove from the oven and let cool few minutes then remove from the baking sheet.
* Almond paste, not marzipan. I found it in our local bulk store.