ALMOND STICKS WITH COCOA NIBS
Makes about 30, 6-inch sticks
Crunch, subtle and not too sweet, these cookies look like extra-thin
miniature biscotti, and have the intriguing nutty flavor of roasted cocoa nibs
3/4 cup (3 3/4 ounces) whole blanched almonds
1 cup plus 2 T. all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 t. salt
6 T. unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 T. water
1 t. pure vanilla extract
1/8 t. pure almond extract
1/4 cup cocoa nibs
Combine the almonds, flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor, and pulse
until the almonds are reduced to a fine meal. Add the butter and pulse
until the mixture looks like a mass of crumbs. Combine the water,
vanilla, and almond extract, drizzle them into the processor bowl and
pulse just until the dough looks damp. Add the cocoa nibs and pulse only
until evenly dispersed.
The dough will not form a smooth cohesive mass - it will be crumbly, but
it will stick together when you press it. Turn it out on a large sheet of
foil and form it into a 6 x 9 inch rectangle a scant 1/2 inch
thick. fold the foil over the dough and press firmly with your hands to
compress it, then wrap it airtight. Slide a cookie sheet under the
package and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven, and preheat
the oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment or wax paper.
Use a long sharp knife to trim one short edge of the dough rectangle to
even it. Then cut a slice a scant 3/8 inch wide and use the knife to
transfer the delicate slice to the cookie sheet. Repeat with the rest of
the dough, transferring each slice as it is cut and placing them at least
1 inch apart. If some break, just push them back together, or bake them
broken - they will look and taste great anyway.
Bake, rotating the cookie sheets from top to bottom and front to back half
way through the baking time, 12-14 minutes, or until the cookies are
golden at the edges. Set the pans on the racks to cool completely. (The
cookies can be stored, airtight, for several days).
Source: Alice Medrich: Bittersweet; Recipes and Tales from a Life in
Chocolate, p. 311.