Almond and Lemon Cloud Cookies (Gluten-free)
December 12, 2012
Let's talk about healthy foods. How would you define a healthy food?
Personally, I like to stick to this definition: “A healthy food is a food organically grown, with no additives, having a balanced nutritional profile, good dietary value and capable of bringing benefit to health.”
It’s pretty good, isn’t it?
Now, we should ask ourselves: would these Almond and Lemon Cloud Cookies fall within such definition? In order to get our answer, we must check whether they comply with the healthy food checklist.
These cookies are made with lots of almond paste, some brown sugar and two egg whites (plus some natural flavorings). No butter, oil or flour. Already a good start.
Organic? Yes (as long as you use organic ingredients).
No additives? None, it’s all natural stuff.
Balanced nutritional profile? Almonds are a superfood and egg whites are a great source of protein. There’s some sugar involved (there’s no denying that) but not a lot.
Good dietary value? With just 90 calories per cookie, I think we’re good.
Bring benefit to health? Almonds are packed with good stuff so there are definitely good things going on here.
Considering all the above, I suppose they will rightfully pass the healthy food test.
I made these cookies from scratch. Literally. I didn’t had almond paste at home. So I made it (following this recipe). Easy.
Once you have almond paste, you’re already halfway there. Lemon zest, vanilla seeds, sugar, egg whites. That’s about it.
If you like almonds, these cookies are a no-brainer. They’re that yummy. They also make quite an impression because they look...well, they look really good!
Almond and Lemon Cloud Cookies Print this Recipe!
Adapted from The King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion and JoytheBaker
Makes 24 cookies
10 oz / 285 gr almond paste
1 cup / 7 oz / 200 gr brown sugar
¼ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
zest of one lemon
24 unblanched almonds
Powdered sugar for topping
Preheat oven to 325°F (165°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside.
In a small bowl combine sugar, lemon zest and vanilla seeds. Using your fingers work the zest and vanilla into the sugar.
In a medium bowl, blend the almond paste, sugar, and salt until the mixture becomes uniformly crumbly. This is best done using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment (I used my fingers and it worked perfectly).
Add the beaten egg whites gradually, while mixing, to make a smooth paste.
Scoop the dough by tablespoon onto the prepared baking sheets.
Sprinkle the cookies with powdered sugar, then use your fingers to press an indentation into the center of each cookie. Place one almond in each indentation.
Bake the cookies for 20 to 25 minutes, until they’re brown around the edges. Remove from the oven, and let them cool right on the baking sheets.
One cookie scores the following nutrition facts: 90 calories, 14 grams of carbs, 3.5 grams of fat and 1.6 grams of protein.
The Iron You