- 1 pound almond paste
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 cup egg whites
- 1 1/2 cup pine nuts
Arrange one rack in the upper third of the oven and the other in the lower third.
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, or grease them lightly.
Crumble the almond paste into a mixing bowl.
Beat with a handheld electric mixer till crumbled fine.
Sprinkle the sugar over the almond paste while continuing to beat, until the sugar is incorporated.
Beat in the egg whites, one at a time, and continue beating until the dough is smooth.
(The batter can be formed into cookies and baked at this point, or wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 1 day.)
Spread the pine nuts out on a plate.
Roll 1 tablespoon of the dough into a ball between your palms.
Drop the dough ball onto the plate of pine nuts.
When you have formed several dough balls, roll them in the pine nuts to coat lightly on all sides.
Transfer them to the prepared baking sheets, and press them lightly to slightly flatten them and help the pine nuts adhere to the cookies.
Repeat with the remaining batter and pine nuts.
Bake the cookies until lightly browned and soft and springy, about 15 minutes.
Remove and cool completely on wire racks before serving.
The cookies can be stored in a covered container at room temperature for up to a week.
VariationIf you cannot find almond paste, try the following variation, which will yield equally delicious cookies with a slightly grainier consistency than those made with store-bought almond paste: Grind 1 pound blanched slivered almonds and 1 1/2 cups sugar to as fine a paste as possible in a food processor, stopping several times to scrape down the sides of the workbowl.
Add 3 large egg whites and continue mixing until the whites are thoroughly incorporated and the batter is smooth.
Continue to roll, coat and bake the cookies as described above.