Monday, December 22, 2014

BB: Almond Coffee Crisps

Almond Coffee CrispsMy father really loved crisp, buttery cookies. For a few years when I was high-school to college age, I'd bake him a batch of "Super Wheat Germ Cookie Balls" for a Christmas present, and he would always remark that it was about his ideal cookie. I'm sorry he's not still with us to try the Almond Coffee Crisps--it might not have displaced the wheat-germ cookies, but I bet it would be in the running.

Side note: the Web is amazing. Here is the wheat-germ cookie recipe, and I probably got it from a clipping in the Atlanta paper from some syndicated column at the same time this Milwaukee Sentinal paper was printed. My yellowed recipe card says to use half butter instead of all shortening, and I probably made it with all butter later on, though I made no notes on that. I rarely shaped it into balls and instead made "fingers" for more crispness. I must bake these again when a cookie need arises, and blog my version of the recipe.

Back to the Almond Coffee Crisps: there's some similarity in this cookie and the cookie part of last week's Ischler as almonds are ground with the dry ingredients. This week there's a hefty addition of baking powder, which must be a major factor in the resulting texture. A good bit of espresso powder goes into this one, and instead of the somewhat problematic (well, for me anyway) rolling out and cutting, the Almond Coffee Crisps are formed by making small dough balls and flattening them. I let my dough rest overnight in the fridge because of timing issues, but these can be formed and baked immediately after mixing. My dough was quite soft at that point so I'm glad I needed to wait. I did try several methods of flattening the balls (an ungreased meat pounder, then the same implement sprayed with Pam, then floured, then the bottom of a glass) but after everything kept sticking to the dough I just used my hands and tried to keep the cookie thickness as even as possible.

I baked on parchment sheets on my heavy shiny baking sheets, for 12 minutes total. While still hot, I used a brush (the recipe suggests a brush or sprinkling with your fingers) to flick more espresso powder on the cookie tops for an extra coffee punch. The cookies came out slightly raised, total crisp, and really lovely. The texture was almost like a 3-d lacework...don't think lace cookies, but a lattice.

Older niece on the first tasting thought the coffee flavor was too strong--as both nieces are coffee fiends, I'm surprised. Her sister didn't have this problem. I offered these at sister-in-law's Hanukkah party this evening, and everyone (including older niece) enjoyed them. Nephew said it reminded him a bit of creme brûlée, and we concluded it was the caramelized sugar flavor that did it. Or as a guest said, sort of coffee-toffee. I'm adding this cookie to the repeat pile.

Almond Coffee CrispsAlmond Coffee Crisps


  1. Your cookies look great! I didn't see any lattice like mine..
    Besides your onion galette..i want to make this too.. i'll copy down your dad's fave cooke recipe! :)

  2. "Coffee toffee"- I thought the same thing! That's a cute story about your dad. I remember when wheat germ had the number one top health spot like kale does today. Do you have a favorite brand?

  3. I laughed about you trying things to press them flat--read my tale about the same thing at! What onion galette is Faithy talking about? That sounds wonderful! Best wishes for happy holidays!

    1. I'll go take a look--I'm glad it wasn't just me! :)

      The galette is from the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook: a Butternut squash and caramelized onion galette. Wonderful dish, and not hard to out together. I put a picture of the one I baked yesterday on my FB timeline, and I've blogged it here I think.

  4. Your cookies look great. I finally resorted to smashing the cookies with my fingers too.

  5. I'm definitely going to check out the wheat germ cookie recipe - thanks for the link. Your cookies are beautiful. Much thicker than mine, but I"m in love with how mine turned out.

    Patricia @ Butteryum

  6. Wheat germ is so underused these days--casualty of hippie overuse. It's really delicious in the right context--I'm with your dad.