Chinese Almond Cookies

I admire so many things about the Asian cultures, people and their food. I especially love that I get to share in a bit of the culture by living in multicultural Western Sydney. The hustle and bustle of the marketplace, people calling out for you to try their fresh produce, families enjoying freshly made meals, teaching their children about their roots, just fills me with joy!

I wanted to try making something traditional to celebrate Chinese New Year 2019. If you frequent Asian grocery stores like I do, there’s a good chance that you will have seen these cookies before. Some of you may have even had these as treats growing up. The soft, crumbly, almond flavoured delicacies are truly amazing, especially paired with a cup of tea! The great thing about them is, you can have them any time of the year…

Give them a go, with my version of the traditional recipe, below.

Ingredients:

1 cup Almond Meal

2 cups Plain flour

1 cup cubed Butter

1 cup caster sugar

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 egg

1 tsp almond extract

Method:

1) Cream together the butter and sugar.

2) Add in the flour, almond meal, baking powder, baking soda, salt and almond extract and combine to form a dough.

3) Chill the dough in the fridge for an hour at least.

4) Roll the dough into balls, place them on a greased and lined baking tray, and flatten them slightly with your palm.

5) Give each cookie a slight egg wash, and place one piece of sliced almond in the centre of each.

6) Bake the cookies in a pre- heated oven at 180 degrees Celsius until golden brown.

** the cookies will be soft, but will harden slightly as they cool. Don’t be impatient, leave them on the tray to cool completely before packaging the cookies.

I hope you have enjoyed this post, and that you have a go at making these cookies for your loved ones! If you would like to collaborate with me, or, if you would like to make any suggestions or even provide some feedback, please feel free to contact me.

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @nazzybaker and like and share this post with your friends.

Until next time…. happy baking!

xxx Nazzy Baker xxx

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Nazzy Bakers – “Patches” a gift for my niece!

So as not to waste a four day weekend, I decided to teach Lulu and LaiLai how to bake my favourite chocolate cake recipe. It was my nieces birthday a few weeks ago, and I hadn’t seen her to wish her happy birthday in person. Lulu, LaiLai and I decided that we would make an edible gift for Miss Mischa out of the chocolate cake!

I got to drawing a design for a teddy bear cake. I’ve always loved the “Me to You” Tatty Teddies, and especially one I had when I was a child, called Patches.

I thought that this bear would be a perfect edible gift for A little girl. Perhaps a little too perfect, as LaiLai decided that she wanted him for herself when I had finished decorating him!! That’s where bribery has its perks! 😂 I told her of my next baking project, and she was more than happy to let Patches go. 👏🏽 1 point to me!! 

Here’s #howididit:

1) I started out with the chocolate cakes that Lulu and LaiLai had baked. I will share their recipe and video in my next post.

*the cake shapes we used for the bear were: 

– 6 inch round chocolate cake

– 3 rounded cupcakes ( 2 for the feet and 1 for the nose) – this is where we improvised! I used a basketball cupcake pan to make these shapes.

– trimming from the cake mixed with icing and shaped into the bears arms. (Made in the same way as cake pops)

*tip : before dirty icing my cakes, I always drizzle sugar syrup over them to help the cake retain moisture.

2) Once shaped, dirty ice the cakes as per the pictures below:

BODY:

HEAD:

3) I then Secured the bears head to its body with a thick drinking straw. ( these can be found at your local discount variety store)

4) I  Secured the other body parts to the bear with icing and straws – another improvisation. ( the body parts will only stick if you use ganache. I used butter cream for this cake, and therefore needed to Secure the feet and nose with another straw)

5) I iced the whole body with grey buttercream, and then rolled out some grey and black fondant to make the eyes, ears, nose and the all important patches!

6) Using a Wilton piping tip (number 233 to be exact) I piped the bears fur 😍

7) Now it wouldn’t be a Nazzy Baker cake, without some bling! I had find a place to add some sparkle to Patches… and then… 💡I had an idea! I would make a balloon and bow tie out of fondant and add gold leaf to the cake! 

8) with the left over blue fondant I made a button nose to finish him off 💕

This bear is a little out of shape. I did not carve his neck enough, and I did not give his arms and legs the structure that they needed. Having said that, this cake was done in 3 hours with my two helpers. It wasn’t planned, and we had to improvise ALOT! What I’m trying to get at, is that you don’t always need fancy tools and ingredients to make a meaningful or pretty cake for a special someone… you just need the will power, a little imagination, and a recipe to follow! A lot of love for the special someone might help too 💕

On that note, keep following my blog posts as I will be posting the chocolate cake recipe shortly, as well as a video on how Lulu and LaiLai baked this cake ❤️

I leave you now with: Mischa’s Patches!!! 

I hope you have enjoyed this post:)

For behind the scenes baking stories, follow me on Instagram and Facebook ✌🏽

Don’t forget to like and share this idea with anyone that you think would enjoy it!
If you do happen to try this recipe, please share your thoughts with me 😊

Happy Baking!!!

xx NaZzYbAkEr xx