Today my very funny and clever daughter Bee is guest posting for me. (I’m not just saying that so she’ll keep making me apricot and almond cookies. Honest). If you enjoy these, try our chocolate and peanut butter cookies.
I am quite good at baking. I also really want people to like me. Luckily the two go hand in hand – as Homer Simpson says, “you don’t make friends with salad”.
As I’m quite new to baking things other than sloppily made fairy cakes, I’m finding I don’t have a lot of the right equipment or ingredients needed for some of the more advanced bakes. I don’t even have a cooling rack, I have to take one of the shelves out of the oven, wait for it to cool down, and then use that.
However, I have found one product that gives great results every time. We were sent a parcel from Whitworth’s that contained all the types of sugar I could think of and more. I was starting to feel like a real baker, with at least 8 different types of sugar in my baking cupboard.
To test out my amazing new array of sugar I made some apricot and almond cookies using a recipe from my favourite baking book, Cake Days from the Hummingbird Bakery:
Makes 10-12 apricot and almond cookies
135g (5oz) unsalted butter
80g (3oz) Whitworth’s caster sugar
80g (3oz) Whitworth’s soft light brown sugar
1 large egg
½ tsp vanilla essence
190g (7oz) plain flour
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
100g (3½oz) dried apricots, roughly chopped
60g (2oz) ground almonds
20g (¾oz) flaked almonds, roasted
Apricot and almond cookies – Method
Preheat the oven to 170°c (325°F), Gas mark 3, and line two baking sheets with baking parchment.
Using a hand-held electric whisk or a freestanding electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and both types of sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the egg and mix thoroughly on a medium-to-high speed, then add the vanilla essence and mix further.
Sift together the flour, salt, ground cinnamon and bicarbonate of soda. Add the dry ingredients to the creamed butter and sugar in two batches, then stir in the chopped apricots and ground almonds.
Break off pieces of the dough, about 2 tablespoons per cookie, then roll into balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Allow five to six cookies per tray, making sure to space them evenly apart, with gaps of about 7cm (3in), as they will spread when baking.
Press a sprinkling of the flaked almonds on top of each cookie ball, then place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until a light golden brown colour. Allow to cool for 10 minutes or so on the sheets before transferring to a wire rack.
Give this apricot and almond cookies recipe a go and I guarantee you a fun time and at least 3 new friends!*
*Fun time and friends not guaranteed.