Apricot Orange Almond Slices
These unique, slice-and-bake cookies bake up rich and buttery but not overly sweet. The orange zest adds a great deal of flavor and complements the apricots perfectly. Enjoy them with an espresso or a cup of hot tea.
- 1 package (7 ounce) dried apricots
- Zest from 1 medium orange, finely grated
- 1 cup slivered almonds, toasted
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Line a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with aluminum foil completely, folding the foil over the top edges of the pan.
Place the dried apricots in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the orange zest and juice. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Place the toasted almonds in processor bowl and pulse until finely chopped. Add the almonds to the apricot-orange mixture and mix well.
Beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and continue to beat until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla, and beat until well blended.
In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to the butter mixture, beating at a low speed until blended.
Add the apricot-almond mixture to the dough and knead until thoroughly blended. Press the dough mixture into the loaf pan, smoothing the top. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Invert the loaf pan on a cutting board and remove the foil. Cut the dough lengthwise into four strips, then slice each strip crosswise into 1/4-inch slices.
Place the slices about 1-1/2 inches apart on parchment lined baking sheets. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies appear set and turn a light golden brown. Cool for about 3 minutes on the cookie sheets, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Makes about 6 dozen
If you are partial to almond flavor, consider using 1/2 teaspoon each almond and vanilla extracts instead of the full teaspoon of vanilla.