Chinese Almond Cookies

Course : Cookies
Serves: 7-8 dozen
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4 Cup Flour
2 1/2 Cup Sugar
4 teaspoon Baking powder
1 teaspoon Baking soda
1 pound Shortening
2 large eggs, beaten
4 teaspoon Almond extract
1/4 Cup Almond halves for garnish
1 large Additional egg for glaze

Preparation / Directions:

These delicate cookies melt in your mouth and are the perfect accompaniment to a Chinese banquet. In a large bowl, sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda together. Gradually beat in the shortening. When the shortening is well blended, add beaten eggs and almond extract. If mixture is sticky, add one or two more tablespoons flour. When mixture is well blended, remove from bowl and separate into four portions. Shape each portion into a log about 1-inch in diameter. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour. Preheat oven to 350ø. Lightly grease baking sheets. Remove logs from refrigerator and cut each log into pieces 3/4- inch thick. Use your hands to roll each slice into a ball. Place the balls on cookie sheets and flatten slightly with your finger tips. Brush gently with beaten egg and place half an almond in the center of the cookie. Bake at 350ø for 12-15 minutes (do not allow cookies to brown they should be almond colored). Remove from oven and let cookies cool on cookie sheets for about two minutes, then remove to racks to cool completely. (They tend to crumble if you remove immediately to racks.) Store in tightly covered tins. Note: These cookies may be frozen for up to 2 months Thaw in original wrapping and, if desired, freshen in a warm oven for 4-5 minutes.

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