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Homemade Italian cookies

  • 50 minutes
  • Medium
  • Desserts and Fruit
Crisp and crumbly, this almond cookie recipe is one of the oldest dessert recipes around.

Ingredients: Per 20 servings

  • 2 lb all-purpose flour
  • 1 lb sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ oz baking soda
  • lemon zest, grated
  • milk to taste
  • 1 ½ lb almonds
  • 1 egg yolk


In a bowl, combine all the ingredients to make a soft, moldable dough. It the dough is too dry, add a couple tbsp of milk.

Roll the dough into a log and brush with beaten egg yolk. Place the log on a baking sheet and bake in a 400° F oven.

After 15 minutes, remove the dough from the oven and cut into 1/2 inch slices. Arrange the cookies on the baking sheet and cook for an additional 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving.

Food History

Cookies are probably one of the oldest sweets around. During Ancient times, they were made with flour of all types, honey and dried fruit. Cookies have been popular through the centuries because they have a long shelf life. Various records show that the Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans all made cookies. The Romans, in particular, made dry spice cookies, which were served at the end of a meal as a digestion-aid.
In the Middle Ages, cookie-making spread through the monasteries where the majority of the modern types of cookies were created. At the beginning of the 19th century, cookie production was industrialized thanks to the work of a London-based pastry chef named Edward. The chef decided to add butter and sugar to his cookie recipes and quickly his cookies spread throughout England and the rest of Europe.

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