Sunday, January 11, 2009

Baci di Dama

There's a great little bakery down the street from my office that has fantastic sandwiches and a variety of baked goods. The goodies available changes daily, and if I'm lucky, the owner's mother will have made baci cookies and if I'm really lucky, they will not have sold outby the time I get there. These are the type of cookies that you obsess, I mean, think about until you get another fix. The name - Baci di dama - means ladies kisses in Italian and they are just that, a subtle kiss of almond.
While this recipe differs slightly from the ones I buy at the bakery, these were wonderful in their own right. The recipe calls for using melted chocolate to sandwich the cookies, but I slathered on Nutella instead. Easier and still delicious!
Baci di Dama
10 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup almonds, ground fine
1 1/2 cups flour
1. Cream butter and sugar with electric mixer until light and fluffy
2. Add egg yolk, almond extract, ground almonds, and flour. Mix until well combined.
3. Cover dough and chill in refrigerator for 2 hours.
4. Preheat oven to 325. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
5. Break off small pieces of dough (about 1 teaspoon) and roll into balls with hands. Place on cookie sheet about an inch or two apart and flatten slightly. You have about 40 balls.
6. Bake for about 20 minutes or until lightly golden.
7. Cool. Spread melted chocolate or Nutella on back of one cookie and top with another.
Note: If you want a finer texture, use almond flour.
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