Thursday, September 10, 2009

Vietnamese Almond/Peanut Cookies

Bánh Hạnh Nhân (Vietnamese Almond/Peanut Cookies)

Literally translated Bánh Hạnh Nhân means almond cookies as "Hạnh Nhân" is Vietnamese for almonds. However, these cookies do not contain a trace of almonds. Instead, they are usually decorated with a peanut or cashew. So why are the called almond cookies then? I honestly don’t know.

-225g all purpose flour
-3 hard boiled egg yolks (approx. 60g)
-175g powdered sugar
-180-190g lard
-1/2 tsp
baking soda
-2 tsp
vanilla powder/sugar
-peanuts or cashews

What to Do:
Mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, and vanilla.
Mash egg yolks and rub into flour mixture. Add lard and mix to form a smooth dough. Divide dough into small thumb size balls, slightly fatten balls (until the sides begin to crack) with your thumb and add a peanut or cashew in the center. Bake at 350’F for 8-10 mins.

These cookies are traditionally made lard.
The lard can be replaced with shortening, oil or butter. However cookies made with lard have a better texture and more authentic flavor. Place the cookies at least 1 inch a part when baking to give them room to spread.

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