Chocolate Flourless Cookies

Adapted from a Recipe by François Payard

Parchment paper
2 ½ cups nuts, toasted and chopped (almonds, walnuts, and peanuts work well). It’s okay if you don’t toast them
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
½ cup plus 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
zest of two oranges (optional)

½ teaspoon salt
4 egg whites
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 350°, and line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper

  1. Finely chop the nuts on a cutting board, or carefully pulse-chop them in a food processor. The nuts should be chopped small, but not reduced to dust.  Transfer to a separate large sheet pan, and toast until fragrant and a bit darker in color, about 7-9 minutes. Check the nuts every two minutes, and shake the pan, to make sure they don’t burn.  They can burn very quickly.  Let them cool to room temperature
  2. Sift the sugar, cocoa, orange zest (optional) and salt into a bowl to remove any lumps and clumping. Whisk together to combine, and set aside until the walnuts have cooled
  3. Stir in the nuts.   Add the egg whites and vanilla; combine with a wooden spoon until the batter is just moistened. Do not overbeat the batter, or it will stiffen
  4. Drop batter by the teaspoonful, 2 inches apart, onto baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Bake cookies until tops are lightly cracked and glossy, about 12-15 minutes
  6. Let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 1-2 minutes, then  place them on cooling racks

Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Makes approximately 40-50 cookies

NOTES: Unless you have a convection oven, you’ll have to bake these cookies one tray at a time.  Also, make sure you use the parchment paper, as the cookies will stick to the pan if you don’t.