Italian Almond Cookies
These Italian Almond Cookies are packed with almond and citrus flavor! With a light, chewy texture, these tasty cookies pair well with a glass of dessert wine. Cheers!
Our region of upstate New York recently added a new area code. 518 has been the telephone area code for as long as we’ve lived here, and now 838 has been added. Understandably, there was a lot of confusion and frustration from folks around here about the new addition. Instead of just 7 numbers, now you need to use 10 numbers whenever you place a call. This is a pretty big change.
When we first moved up here almost 10 years (!) ago now, I remember being shocked that we only had to dial 7 numbers. It was so strange to see advertisements and billboards without the area code. After all, there was only one area code, so why include it? We moved up from Atlanta, and at the time Atlanta had 3 different area codes. Using that 3-digit area code was just a normal way of making a call. Forgetting to include the area code could mean the difference between calling the dog groomer or placing a to-go order for pizza. Oops!
I was recently going through a box of my childhood keepsakes, and I stumbled across an Atlanta Braves magazine from 1993. It was a fan magazine that I picked up when my grandpa took me on a road-trip to see a Braves game. A lot has changed in the 25+ years since I bought that magazine. The Braves players pictured on the cover have all retired, and several of them have been voted into the Hall of Fame. The ballpark depicted on that cover has been torn down…and the one that took its place has been torn down, too. Oh, and Atlanta now has multiple area codes.
That’s right. The inside cover of that magazine features a Pizza Hut commercial, and the number doesn’t include an area code. It looks so out of place to me now! There is also an ad for NationsBank on the opposing page. I’ve never even heard of NationsBank. (Wikipedia tells me they merged into Bank of America sometime in the late 90’s.) I’ve always found it fascinating to go back and read old magazines…not for the articles, but for the advertisements.
Italian Almond Cookies
Ok, enough talk about area codes and old magazine advertisements. Let’s talk about Italian Almond Cookies instead! These cookies are insanely easy to make. Just look at the list of ingredients. It’s basically almond flour, egg whites and powdered sugar. There’s a tiny bit of baking powder and some extracts for flavor. But that’s it. (And since almond flour is the base, these Italian Almond Cookies are gluten-free, too.)
These cookies, called Ricciarelli in Italian, are typically served during the holidays alongside a glass of dessert wine. This version varies slightly from the more traditional Italian version as it uses almond flour and egg whites instead of almond paste. However, the chewy, light texture is spot on and these cookies would indeed be delicious with a glass of Vin Santo during the holidays. These Italian Almond Cookies also use the zest of an orange, and I might actually put the zest of two oranges into these cookies the next time I bake a batch. The citrus and almond flavors here combine to produce a light dessert that’s perfect when you want a sweet treat that isn’t too heavy.
I suspect these cookies would also be delicious as a mid-morning snack along with a mug of coffee. Update: I just got back from the kitchen with a coffee and one of these Italian Almond Cookies. They do indeed go well together! I hope you enjoy these cookies as much as we do around here. Happy baking!
Did you make a batch of these Italian Almond Cookies at home? Leave a comment or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog). Cheers!
Looking for more tasty cookie recipes? Check out these other favorites, too:
Gingerbread Button Cookies
Vanilla Pecan Snowball Cookies (Gluten Free)
Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Chewy Molasses Cookies
Chocolate Almond Horseshoe Cookies
Italian Almond Cookies
- 2 large egg whites
- 2¼ cups almond flour
- 1¾ cups powdered sugar plus more for rolling cookies
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1½ tsp almond extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup sliced almonds for decorating
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.
- Using a medium bowl, add almond flour, powdered sugar, baking powder and salt; stir until well combined.
- Fold whipped egg whites into the bowl with dry ingredients, taking care not to over-stir.
- Add lemon juice, orange zest, almond extract and vanilla extract; fold just until combined.
- Working with ~ 1 Tbsp of dough, roll it into a round ball. (Tip: Dip your fingers in powdered sugar to keep dough from sticking to your hands too much.) Shape dough into an oval or log and then roll in extra powdered sugar. Place cookie on parchment-lined sheet pan.
- Once all cookies have been placed on sheet pan, flatten the tops slightly with the palm of your hand.
- Top each cookie with 1-2 sliced almonds.
- Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until cookies are light golden brown.
- Let cool for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack until completely cooled.
- Dust lightly with powdered sugar before serving.
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Phoenix has two (maybe more?) area codes and the weird thing is, not all businesses put their area codes on signs. I don’t know if they expect people to guess or if there’s some way native Phoenicians have of discerning the correct area code and I’m just not privy to their methods. . .but since all the important numbers are already in my phone I guess I don’t need to worry about it! As for these cookies, I hope you saved me a few. They look delicious!
That’s so weird, Kelsie! How do you know which area code you’re supposed to use!? Also, you mentioned a phone book. Do you actually use (or even have) a phone book!? The last time I used a phone book, it was to prop up a construction project. Haha! Hope you have a great weekend ahead!
I remember visiting my grandma when I was a kid and they only had to dial the last 4 digits. They also had party lines and that was crazy! These cookies look crazy too – crazy good that is! I always love a good cookie and am always on the lookout for something new. These would perfect on a holiday tray full of cookies!
What!? Only had to dial the last 4 digits? That’s crazy! Also, that would mean there were less than 9,999 different numbers in the area. (Also crazy!) Like you, I’m always on the hunt for fun new cookies…and these Italian Almond Cookies definitely qualify. They’re delicious, and perfect with a mug of coffee or a glass of dessert wine. 🙂
The Bay Area here in California has so many different area codes. My friend, who is 84, tell me of the times when there where none. I love your cookies, I think I have eaten similar ones in Italy. Happy Thanksgiving.
Yes! We were out in the Bay Area a couple of months for vacation, and there are more area codes than you can shake a stick at out there. Thinking back, it was so weird (but also convenient) when there weren’t area codes. (Of course, that was when I was like 8 years old…)
Hope you enjoy these cookies, Gerlinde. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family! 🙂
Funny how little things like that can throw ya off! And funny how things change. It’s always nice to keep old magazines and the like for that very reason…to go down memory lane. I bet you are totally right…these cookies do go well with coffee and if ya wanna send me some just to be sure, go right ahead 😉 I won’t complain! Have an awesome weekend ahead, my friend!
It was so funny flipping through that magazine and seeing the old ads. And it really struck me when the Pizza Hut in the middle of Atlanta didn’t have an area code. Man, how times have changed!
In other news, I’m totally ok sitting back with a plate of these cookies and some coffee (or dessert wine…depending on the time of the day). 🙂 Hope you have an awesome weekend ahead, too, Dawn!
I remember when Nova Scotia got a second area code, lots of disruption for people! Anyway, I’m starting to look for good cookie recipes for the holidays, so this is well timed, they look tasty! Glad to know they go well with coffee!
Yes! That extra area code can really be difficult. I remember having to navigate 3 different area codes when we lived in Atlanta. Then we moved up here where they only had 1 area code until recently. Crazy!
If you’re collecting holiday cookie recipes, then put these on the list! They’re unique and quite delicious. Perfect with a cup of coffee or a glass of dessert wine depending on the time of the day. 🙂 Hope you and the family have a great weekend ahead, Matt!
10 numbers to remember?! Gosh, it’s always challenging to memorize my own phone number (Only 7 numbers luckily…plus the code…well that’s the same 10 digits, after all.) Indeed, I still haven’t learned our postal code yet which is only the combination of 6 numbers&letters. So I totally feel sorry for the folks from NY!
But at least you have these amazing cookies (Sadly, I don’t). Italian cuisine can offer some of the most delicious Christmas cookies, and these guys are no exception! Have you tried pignoli cookies (Almond – pine nuts)? They’re so good, too!
Haha! I love that you’re stilling trying to remember your postal code. You’ve lived there for what? 2 years now? Or has it only been a year? Either way, I see let’s forget about numbers…unless we’re talking about how many of these cookies I want to eat. 🙂 And, yes, I have indeed tried pignoli. Those are another delicious Italian classic. Those Italians really know their cookies, huh?
these look so beautiful and light too, david. i do love almond-flavoured biscuits. sorry i just can’t say cookies, unless i’m talking about american-style treats. we have ten digit phone numbers but you don’t have to dial (dial? who dials anymore? tee hee:-)) the first two (which are the area code) if you are calling within the same state. so really it ends up being 8 digits! I always find the english phone numbers especially mobiles incredibly looooonnggg.
Haha! I imagine this is a difficult time of the year as all of these tasty cookie (aka biscuit) posts are popping up on the web. But, yes, these are light and airy, but also packed with flavor. Yum!
You make a good point about dialing. Now it’s just pushing virtual buttons on our phones. I remember using a rotary phone in my grandma’s house…the kind where you had to wait for the dial to roll back after you put in each number. Kinda cool!
David, I haven’t dialed a local number from my house phone for so long, I can’t remember if we have to use an area code or not. I do remember growing up we only had to dial 5 numbers to make a call!
Loving these Italian almond cookies! The combination of almond and orange is so delicious. And we love a light sweet treat with our coffee!
Tell me about it! Well, first of all, I’m a little surprised you still have a house phone. I loved my house phone, but we ditched it when we moved up here about 10 years ago. The only people that called that line were telemarketers…bah!
In other news, I agree about orange + almond. It’s such a refreshing flavor combo! 🙂
Changing area code and zip codes can be such a challenge. They changed our zip a couple of years ago and I still get ‘invalid address’ errors all the time when I try to enter my mailing address.
Almond cookies are one of my favorites, David. The texture of yours looks absolutely mouthwatering!
Oh my gosh…changing zip code would be a nightmare! Think of all the place that have your address, and then suddenly it just up and changes. No thank you! That would require lots and lots of cookie-eating I think. 🙂 Thanks, Marissa!
Wow, that is a big change to a phone number!! It must have been hard to get used to! 🙂
These cookies make me so happy – I love almond cookies. Especially at this time of year – I always associate baking and Christmas 😀
I’m sure your phone numbers down there are quite different from ours. But adding/changing area codes is a real pain! I mean I get it. You run out of 7-digit numbers, so you need to figure out how to make new phone numbers. But still.
I prefer to stick to my cookie baking instead! This almond cookies are mighty delicious…and they go well with a glass of wine after dinner. <-- speaks from experience. 🙂
David, Believe it or not, except for biscotti, I’ve never made a cookie in my life? I might start with these, they look pretty easy and I do love the flavor of almonds.
I remember back from my childhood we used only 7 digits for calls. After all, just about everyone I knew lived in my home town. But it’s been years since I’ve had a land line and I can hardly remember the last time I actually *dialed* a phone number, lol!
What!? Ok, now that I just don’t believe. 🙂 I’m going to challenge you to make these cookies, Frank. They do require almond flour, so that might be a separate trip to the store…but it’s worth it. Plus, serve these up with a glass of vin santo, and you’re in for a real treat!
I’m with ya on dialing numbers. We haven’t had a landline in about 10 years now. Every so often someone dumps a phone book in our driveway, and I usually use it to prop up something or start our outdoor firepit. Hah!
I’m in LA and remember when it was all one area code — now it’s more than 5, I think. I yes, it’s a pain to dial numbers. On to deliciousness . . . lovely recipe. I’m thinking the mid-morning snack. 🙂 ~Valentina
Wow, I can’t imagine LA with one area code. How times have changed, huh? 5 area codes would indeed get confusing!
In other news, cookies are delicious. Cookies as a mid-morning snack are even more delicious. 🙂 Thanks, Valentina!
Where I live in Minnesota we don’t have to dial the area code, but I live in a more rural area (small town). I love this type of cookie! I will have to make these Italian almond cookies for the holidays. I am sure my family would love them.
Wow, an area that still only has 1 area code! That’s actually pretty nice, Dawn. 🙂
As far as these cookies go, definitely put them on your list! They’re light and airy, so they’re the perfect sweet treat after a big holiday meal. Thanks so much, my friend!
I was already interested in this Italian Almond Cookies recipe just by looking at the pictures. Then you got my interest completely when you said these tasty cookies pair well with a glass of dessert wine! Ha ha! We’ve got 4 digit area codes for most of our areas here. Although I rarely use them as I can’t recall last time I called a land line! Except for my parents of course! 🙂
So these cookies are super light and airy, Neil! And the result is a slightly chewy cookie with wonderful orange and almond flavor. Perfect with that glass of dessert wine! 🙂
4 digit area codes over there? Now you’re getting confusing! And I totally had to laugh about the land line and your parents. So true!!
Well, who doesn’t want a cookie that goes well with wine? I was living near Philly when I bought my first cell phone, and that number has stuck with me, even as I’ve changed service providers and dozens of phones. So, I actually don’t know anyone in my area code anymore!
Cookies and wine are where the party’s at, Jeff. Be there on time!
I’m with ya on the area code and cell phone thing. I still have an Atlanta area code. So when I get a call from a 404 number, I know right away it’s spam! (And don’t even get my started on those spammers…)
It’s cookie season and why not have one on hand that I can munch on with a nice glass of red while planning my next cookie bake.
We have a convoluted and outdated system here. Some city codes are 2 digits while others are 3 or 4 digits and mobile calls have a different code system that always starts with “0”. I’ve gotten used to it, but now they’re changing it to a new system, so I think I’ll just not call anyone. Oh, and our emergency services number is 122, not 911. But, 122 makes sense as a small child can remember 122 easier than 911.
Yes! I’m with ya here, Ron. Cookie in one hand, glass of wine in the other while you stand in the kitchen contemplating the next batch of cookies to bake. I like how you think! 🙂
Oh man, that phone system there sounds confusing as heck. A different one for landline vs. mobile!? And I thought we had a confusing system here…
Somehow I mizssed that you are in Saratoga, we are in Washington County!! Up until a few years ago here you did not have to dial even the local code, much less an area code. Just the last 4. If you wanted to call a number in a different town- say, from Greenwich to Argyle- you had to dial the first three. And it was a toll call!! One family here lived on the dividing line, got the Phone co to install 2 lines- one at the Argyle end of the house, one at the Greenwich end! Cost them less than making all those toll calls! In my town we have the Vermont border, but because Wash Cty dispatches fire & rescue for Vermont we could call parts of 802 (Vermont) free. At one point our dial up came thru there, the phone co screwed up & hundreds of border dwellers suddenly were billed hundred of $$ for that crappy old dial up!!
If you get to Boston, MIKES in the North End has wonderful pastries, inc the best cannolis, and a wonderful version of these Almond Cookies. I sent my husband in as I held our semi legal parking spot, I told him to get a few pounds to share with family back home. He got — a dozen. As soon as he tasted one- while still.parked!!- he got out, went back & got all they had! We do this every time we go!! Hmmm— maybe I can make these at home!! (We will still go to Mikes, it’s a teadition now!)
Enjoy our beautiful Fall weather!!
Hey Judith! We are practically neighbors. 🙂 The weather has indeed been beautiful lately, although the freezing temperatures at night are a little too soon for me.
Wow, I can’t believe your note about just dialing the last 4 numbers – that’s crazy. To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever heard about that. Even growing up when I’d visit my grandparents in a tiny South Carolina town, we still dialed 7 numbers. Fun memories, though!
So I really appreciate the recommendation for Mike’s in Boston. We haven’t done any traveling lately (for obvious reasons), but whenever we finally make our way there. Also, a dozen pounds!? That’s a lot of cookies! But I totally understand it. I have a weak spot for a good cookie, too. I hope you get a chance to make these at home sometime. They are certainly a unique cookie thanks to the almond flour and egg whites. However, they are quite tasty, too! Cheers, my friend!