salted praline langues de chat
It was a sad day when Gourmet announced that the November 2009 issue will be their last. Luckily the illustrious food publication lives on via its extensive archive (found online at epicurious) that include tantalising recipes like this one for Salted Praline Langues de Chat from the December 2007 issue. I am obsessed with anything salted caramel (I particularly have a soft spot for melt‘s amazing sea salt caramels and L’Artisan du Chocolat‘s lemongrass infused variation), so these cookies were a natural choice for my Gourmet, unbound submission this month.
The langues de chat came out a little cakey in texture (probably due to my poor piping skills) and not as crisp as they should have. I will definitely give them another go though (with a smaller nozzle), as they did taste good and would make a great accompaniment to after-dinner tea and coffee.
Salted Praline Langues de Chat
(from Gourmet magazine)
makes 60 cookies
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup sliced almonds (preferably with skin), toasted
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1/3 cup sliced almonds (preferably with skin)
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
5 large egg whites
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon pure almond extract
fleur de sel (or maldon salt), for sprinkling
equipment: a pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch plain tip
Put a large sheet of foil on a heatproof work surface.
Heat sugar in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, stirring with a fork to heat sugar evenly, until it starts to melt, then stop stirring and cook, swirling skillet occasionally so sugar melts evenly, until it is golden. Add toasted almonds, stirring until coated well, then carefully pour onto foil (mixture will spread) and cool completely, about 15 minutes. Peel praline off foil and chop with a large heavy knife. Transfer to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
Preheat oven to 325°F with racks in upper and lower thirds. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
Whisk together flour and table salt. Pulse almonds with sugar in a food processor until finely ground.
Beat butter and sugar mixture with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, then beat in egg whites and extracts. At low speed, mix in flour mixture in 3 batches until just combined well.
Transfer batter to pastry bag, then dab some batter under corners of parchment to secure to baking sheets. Pipe 6-inch-long strips (about 1/3 inch wide) 1 1/2 inches apart in 2 slanted rows (so they will fit) on each baking sheet.
Bake until slightly puffed but still pale, 7 to 9 minutes, then sprinkle generously with praline and lightly with sea salt. Continue baking until cookies are baked through and golden-brown on edges, 7 to 11 minutes more. (Turn baking sheets if cookies are browning unevenly.) Slide parchment with cookies onto racks to cool completely (cookies will crisp as they cool).
Form and bake more cookies on cooled baking sheets lined with fresh parchment.
note: praline can be made 1 week ahead and kept in an airtight container at room temperature. cookies keep, layered between sheets of parchment, in an airtight container at room temperature 1 week.
~ by gourmettraveller on December 1, 2009.