Procrastinating from study last week, I knew the perfect thing to waste some time and still be satisfying would be to bake some cookies. I had bookmarked this recipe on one of my favourite cooking blogs, 101cookbooks, after seeing it recreated by Natashia from Food on Paper.
I have been looking for a recipe for meringue cookies filled with nuts for so long, and though the delicious ones I originally ate weren’t chocolate, I knew that these would be amazing just from looking at the recipe. I didn’t realise exactly the quantity that would be produced from the batter, so ended up taking a majority of the batch to uni to share around with all the stressed out first year students! Sugar overload!
They are also gluten-free – a big bonus if you have friends who are gluten intolerant.
If you don’t have people to share with I would recommend halving or even quartering the recipe.
Check out the original recipe, I altered it slightly to use half walnuts and half pecans.
Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C.
- 1.5 cup walnuts
- 1.5 cup pecans
Toast in a dry frypan until browned – make sure you keep an eye on them as they start to change colour as they move very fast. You want them brown and toasty but not burnt. Set them aside to cool and then chop into chunks.
- 4 cups confectioner’s sugar – I used icing sugar but I think it would be better with icing mixture (they are slightly different
- 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
Sift the sugar and cocoa powder into a large bowl. Add the sea salt. Stir in your cooled chopped nuts.
- 4 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon real, good-quality vanilla extract
Separate the eggs (keep the yolks for ice cream or custard, they can be frozen) and add to the icing sugar mixture, along with the vanilla extract. Stir until well combined.
Have a few baking trays ready lined with baking paper (Do this step or it will be impossible to get the cookies off the tray). Spoon your mixture in small mounds on each tray – I experimented with large and small cookies and must say that I enjoyed the ones I scooped out with a teaspoon. Just make sure you get enough nuts in each cookie and that you put them very far apart as they expand more than you would think.
The cooking timing was the most difficult part, but the original recipe says 12-15 minutes, or until the cookies puff up. I had some that were overcooked and crispy and some undercooked so much that I had to throw them back in the oven – so take your time and check as you go along. They really are cooked before they look it.
Cool on a rack still on the baking paper and remove when completely cool (or they will fall apart).
These cookies are super delicate but the taste is certainly worth it. Be warned though they are super sweet!