How to fail at Chinese Almond Cookies

It takes a lot of work to fail on a four-recipe cookie, I must admit. It wasn’t just that I failed at making these cookies, it is how much I epically failed – to the point that they did not resemble themselves by the time we ate one.

Chinese Almond Cookies are usually on the bland side, something easy to make, easy to eat and gluten and wheat free. The last part is obviously the most important part for me. I have no problems trying to make complicated food, I just would like it not to cause me pain and distress when I sample it. our local grocery store has been out of rice flour for a while, so upon purchasing some in Erfurt, I decided to see what I could make. Not having eggs in the house either, Chinese Almond Cookies were really my only bet.

The recipe called for 1 cup of rice flour, a half cup of brown sugar, 2 cups of almonds and a third of a cup of butter.  Now, I currently live in Germany. I had to search for a converter for each of these ingredients in order to figure out what that means in grams. Approximately 160g rice flour, 100g brown sugar, 225g almonds and 75 g of butter. The recipe is fairly simple, mix everything together, form into balls on a cookie sheet, press an almond in the middle of each one, bake at 350F (175C) for 10 – 15 minutes. Imagine my surprise when I started gathering ingredients together and realized that I didn’t actually have 225g worth of almonds, nevertheless whole almonds to press into the top of each cookie.

Hazelnuts are close enough to almonds, right?

Right.

So, I made little balls out of rice flour, brown sugar, almonds and about 82g of butter, since that’s all we had left and it didn’t seem like enough butter to hold that much dough together. The recipe suggested a touch of water if it didn’t hold together, which actually did work remarkably well. I put them on their cookie sheet, put them in the oven, and waited.

I have had bad luck with gluten free flour lately, most of my cookies turn into butter puddles. So I was assuming this would happen, even with a dough that was mostly flour and almonds hazelnuts. It didn’t- 14 minutes later, they came out, still perfect little balls, just slightly browner. They definitely looked and tasted completely differently than the Chinese Almond Cookies that I’ve had before. My guy took a bite and said that it needed something, gestering to the bars of solid chocolate. He melted a hundred grams or so of dark chocolate with some butter and sugar. We then dunked these hazelnut balls into the chocolate and then put them in the fridge.

Amazing.

Hazelnut covered in chocolate is about as good as it sounds, particularly with this much butter. If I ever get the chance to make these again, I may even take photos.

 

So what’s the point of this post?

Make mistakes, try new things, be willing to experiment, just because you don’t have exactly what you need doesn’t mean you should give up. Eat food, eat good food that you can understand all of the ingredients of, be willing to let other people mess with your creations, know how to laugh at yourself.

Depending on the response to this, there may be more food posts coming. Eating gluten free and wheat free in Germany is a massive challenge. But we get through it. That’s another post – or six.

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