Monday, January 11, 2010

Bloggers Eat Cookies

Today I went to a fun Blogger Cookie Swap hosted by Shannon!  There was 10 of us there, and we’re each brought a few cookies for each person. Wait till you see the spread :)

Last night, before making that AWESOME dinner, I started working on my cookie creation…

Chocolate Orange Almond Macaroons!

I started with the Almond Macaroon Recipe from Cooks Illustrated.  I don’t have access to their website, but I searched and found it on the web.

Cooks Illustrated Almond Macaroons
(my changes in pink)

7 ounces almond paste or 7 ounces blanched almonds
6 ounces blanched almond (silvered or whole)
1 1/4 cups sugar (regular or vanilla)
3 egg whites from 3 large eggs
1 tablespoons Amaretto (optional) I did not add it
1 teaspoon almond extract
I added 1 tsp orange zest

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cover two cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

2. Place almonds into the bowl of a food processor and process until roughly chopped. Add the sugar and continue to process until the almonds are finely ground. Crumble in the almond paste (if using) and continue to process until the paste is pulverized and you have a fairly uniform mixture. If you are not using almond paste, process until the almonds are fine and crumbly but not powdery, about 1 minute to 90 seconds.

p.s. Almond Paste is freaking AMAZING!!!


3. Add the egg whites, extract, and Amaretto and continue to process until the dough is smooth and begins to form into a ball at the edge of the processor blades. Remove from the food processor and allow mixture to stand for 20 minutes.

4. Drop level tablespoons of the mixture onto your prepared parchment paper leaving about 1 1/2 inches of space between each cookie. For an even prettier cookie, gently roll the dough into a ball.

5. Bake for 20-25 minute, rotating the cookie sheets top to bottom and side to side during the baking process. The cookies should be golden on top but should not be over baked as they will have a tendency to harden.

6. Remove cookies from the oven and allow to cool completely on the parchment paper. To make removal easier, scrape the cookie off with a table knife or thin spatula to reduce the chance of tearing. Once cooled the cookies can be stored air tight for up to 4 days or frozen for 1-3 months.

Yield: Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

My notes:
- I read it wrong, thought it was 6oz of Almond Paste, so I used a little less than the recipe.
- My batter also did not thicken up as it should of, so I ground some more almonds and added them, it helped a little.
- I was a little worried, but after it sat for the 20 min, it got thicker.  Still not as thick as I’d hope… BUT they came out good!

After they cooled I melted some dark chocolate to drizzle on top.


Mmmm!  They didn’t rise as much as I would of liked but the almond-orange combo is perfect!  Hope everyone likes them :) 


In the morning I packed up my cookies into little bags and headed in Boston (with a stop for a manicure on the way :)


Cookies Glorious Cookies!!


Tina’s Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Bars (I was so pumped to finally try these infamous bars!)


Shannon’s Maple Toffee Oatmeal Cookies with Bacon


Adrienne’s Lime Meltaways


Elina’s Chocolate Crinkle Cookies


Kelly’s Cookie Dough Truffles


Nicole’s Lemon Almond Cranberry Crescent Cookies


Kerstin’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars


Mary Kate’s Black and White Cookies



Rebecca’s Breakup Bars …, I haven’t tried them all yet but these things are freaking amazing!!




Shannon also had a nice spread of snacks to hold us over until we dove into the cookie table!

A smoked salmon mousse:

Chips, delicious Guac, and salsa


Mini frittatas with gorgonzola and pear, coconut chai almonds (yum!), and some bacon chips (!!!)


Blogger fun!

IMG_7759 IMG_7760 

Thanks, Shannon, for hosting a fun and delicious afternoon :)

When I got home (after a couple errands), I was hungry for some dinner involving vegetables.  I also wanted something quick and broke out the Boboli Whole Wheat thin crust we bought yesterday.


1/2 with marinara, mozzarella, green peppers, and red onion

1/2 with pesto, feta, a little mozzarella, and fresh spinach

With a small salad on the side.


I may have gone back to the cookies after this ;)


  1. Ah! So jealous. Such a fun meet up (I wish more bloggers lived down here!). Your cookies look beautiful - way to remedy the recipe. Those Cookie Dough Truffles look so freaking incredible too! Great pizza too- love lots of veggies on top. I hope this week treats you well.

  2. Such fantastic looking cookies!! I love your chocolate drizzles--they look professional!!

  3. holy cookies -- this post is pure torture! I'm drooling all over myself.

  4. cookies look delicious!

    Grapefruit is a personal fave of mine :)

  5. All those cookies look fantastic. Looks like a fun time!

  6. ooh, i've never worked with almond paste before! your drizzles looked quite professional ;) i needed veggies asap, too!! thanks for bringing these delicious treats, and it was great to see you again!

  7. Chocolate and Orange.. yum.. perfect match

  8. Cookie swap what a fantastic idea. I think they just looked yummier and yummier (if thats even a word) with each picture

  9. Oh cookies! I love almond flavor with orange- it's so subtle and fabulous together.

    I don't remember if I knew we got married on the same day, but it's a fun coincidence!

  10. Your cookies were delish! I had one when I got home...I know, I had MORE cookies! I loved the orange flavoring paired with the chocolate. And the almond taste was sensational! Cute packaging, too! It was nice to see you again, Bridget. I hope to see you soon!

  11. How fun! I am glad you were all able to get together!

  12. Oh my gosh those cookies look incredible! YUM!

  13. It was so nice meeting you on Sunday! Your cookies were so soft and yummy - I loved the almond flavor!

  14. Your cookies look heaven sent. I found your blog just surfing around and it caught my attention because I ate yogurt with berries this morning :) I'm excited to keep reading.

  15. Your cookies look lovely... and you got great pictures of the whole event! I wish I could have made it there.