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Gluten-free cookies can be really simple to make

Gluten free Pignoli Cookies Carol Kicinski

These delightful almond pignoli cookies are made with ingredients available in regular supermarkets.

Gluten-free cookies can be really simple to make
Whether or not you follow a gluten-free diet chances are someone you know and love does. One in 133 people have Celiac Disease – a digestive disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with the absorption of nutrients from food.If that doesn’t seem like a very high number then consider this – currently 15 percent of the population in America is eating gluten-free which means that for every 20 people you know, the likelihood is that 3 of those people are eating gluten-free.Gluten is a sticky substance found in wheat, barley and rye. A gluten free diet is one that is free of these grains and products made from them such as wheat flour. Gluten is found in traditional recipes for breads, cakes, pies and cookies.

Carol-KicinskiCarol Kicinski
Simply Gluten Free

You may feel it is difficult to bake without flour. While some gluten free baking can be a bit complicated, many delicious holiday treats that can be made with simple, everyday ingredients found in grocery stores.

These Pignoli Cookies are a great example. With 5 ingredients and a few minutes of time, you can whip up a batch of these traditional Italian cookies that will be loved by all, not just those on a gluten free diet.

The cookies get their name from the Italian word for “pine nuts”, the

edible seeds from pine trees. These cookies are almost like a macaroon; crispy on the outside, chewy and marshmallowy on the inside.They are packed with almond flavor and topped with buttery pine nuts. They have a taste very similar to an almond croissant, something I had missed dearly since going gluten free.Even if you are fortunate enough to not have any dietary restrictions, it is always a good idea to consider that others may not be able to enjoy the treats you lovingly prepare for them.Try these simple and delicious cookies and I can guarantee that no one (not even those who regularly consume gluten) will be disappointed.
8 ounce can of pure almond paste Pinch kosher or fine sea salt
1 cup sugar
2 large egg whites
¼ cup pine (Pignoli) nuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon baking mats.
Break the almond paste into small pieces and put into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, process until almost smooth. With the machine running, gradually add the sugar through the feed tube. Turn off the processor, add the salt and egg whites and process until it turns into a batter, about 30 seconds.
Using a tablespoon or small ice cream scoop, drop the batter onto the prepared pans in mounds, spacing about 2 inches apart. Gently press a few pine nuts onto each cookie.
Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes or until they are firm to the touch and lightly browned. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling. Makes 24 cookies.

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