Chinese Almond Cookies
Makes 60 cookies
I learned to make these in my teens from my first cooking instructor, Verna Meyers. On Chinese New Year I sometimes use red-colored sugar and keep the skin on the almonds.
If you don’t want to use lard, butter works, they just won’ be quite as crisp. If you are vegan, replace the lard with coconut oil.
3 C sifted flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 C sugar, plus additional for rolling
1 ½ C lard or unsalted butter
1 tsp almond extract
60 whole almonds, blanched
Mix the flour, soda and salt. Reserve. Beat the lard or butter with the sugar until thick and light, then add the almond extract. Add the eggs one at a time and mix well. Add the dry ingredients all at once and mix just until everything is moist. Chill the dough for one hour.
Scoop out one-ounce or two-teaspoon portions, roll in sugar and flatten on a cookie sheet. Top each with an almond. Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes until golden. Cool one minute and transfer to a rack to continue cooling. Bet you can’t eat just one...