Pignoli Cookies - Twiins Style
Every year we start our holiday baking about 2 weeks before Christmas. We have been baking together for over 40 years, a holiday tradition we love. Christmas music is playing in the background while we reminisce about our childhood & Christmas's of long ago. Our all-time favorite holiday cookie is the fragrant, chewy almond Pignoli cookie. Pignolias (aka pine nuts) are from the Italian Stone Pine trees of the Meditteranean regions of Spain, Portugal & Italy. The Asian pignolias from China are not as flavorful as the Meditteranean pignolias so we avoid using them. You can tell they are from China by their much cheaper price tag. Our pignoli cookies taste just like the ones from the best Italian bakeries in New York. Really they do, and our recipe is naturally Gluten-Free! They fly off the holiday cookie tray...you and your family will love them. ❤️❤️
- 1 (8oz) box or can of Solo Almond Paste (do not use almond filling)
- 2 egg whites
- 1 cup Mediterranean Pignolias
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/8 tsp kosher salt
- Confectioners’ sugar for light dusting
- Using a Convection oven, preheat oven to 275ºF. (If using a regular oven increase temperature to 300ºF.)
- Line 2 large cookies sheets with parchment paper or a silicone pad or grease 2 large cookie sheets if parchment paper or silicone pad isn’t an option.
- Sift granulated sugar and 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar with almond flour and salt. Set aside.
- Using a fork, break up the almond paste into small pieces in a medium bowl. Add egg whites and beat with an electric mixer at medium speed, until well blended and smooth.
- With a wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture until well blended.
- Place dough into a large pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip. (You can also use a rounded teaspoon full of dough 1½-inches in diameter. Place 2-inches apart on large cookie sheet.
- Generously press the pignoli nuts all around & on top of the dough making sure to keep the dough rounded, do not flatten.
- Bake slowly for 20 – 30 minutes, depending on your oven, until the bottoms are golden. The edges of the cookies should be golden but the tops will be lighter.
- Remove from the oven and let them cool in the baking sheet.
- When cooled, lightly dust with confectioners’ sugar or leave plain. Either way, they are delicious.
- Store several days in a tightly covered container to mellow. These will keep for up to 2 weeks if stored properly.
1. Press half a candied cherry or maraschino cherry in the center of each cookie.
2. Using your thumb or index finger coated in confectioner’s sugar, make a thumbprint in the center and fill it with a small amount of raspberry preserves.
3. Roasted, salted pistachios can be used in place of pignolias. Bake as above.