How do they both compare? Well I found that the cashewnut marzipan is lighter while the almond one is a little on the denser side. That being said, the almond version is super delicious. I think even more than the cashewnut one. Then, there’s also the fact that the almond one is a no-cook recipe. So, to sum up, I will still make my cashewnut version as it is a little easier to work with, but the almond one will be absolutely perfect to use in so many different ways. I’d love for you to try it out and tell me what you think of it.
No-cook Almond Marzipan
(Yields 250-260gms approx.)
1 cup raw, natural almonds
1/2 cup icing sugar
1/2 tsp rose water (you can add a little more if needed)
1/2 tsp almond extract (you can add a little more if needed)
Place the almonds in a heatproof bowl.
Pour water from a recently boiled kettle over the almonds to cover the nuts. Leave the almonds to soak for a couple of minutes.
Drain the almonds and peel them. Place them on some kitchen paper or a clean kitchen towel to dry up. Let the almonds cool down completely.
In a high powered blender / food processor, blitz the almonds to a fine powder.
Place the almond powder in a large bowl. Add in the icing sugar. Mix it thoroughly till combined.
Add the rose water and almond extract and knead to form a dough / log.
Your marzipan is now ready to be used.
If you don’t need to use it immediately, you can wrap it in cling film and refrigerate till needed. It keeps for a couple of months. (Personally, I would just make this when needed, probably a couple of days ahead.)
NOTE: This marzipan is not a very sweet version. When the marzipan is formed, taste some of it. If you want it sweeter, simply add some more icing sugar and knead it in.
Let’s talk about the dough for a bit. It is such a ridiculously simple recipe, you will be surprised at how tasty the nankatais turn out. I find that this dough can be a little finicky and it usually works beautifully on a slightly warm day. While that works beautifully for us in Australia and anyone in the Southern Hemisphere, it could be a challenge in the Northern Hemisphere, where its the middle of winter. If its cold where you are, you might find that the dough ends up a little crumbly and you may have a little difficulty shaping it into a cookie. When that happens, I pop the dough in an ovensafe bowl and pop it into a slightly warm oven (about 100 degrees) for a couple of minutes. This helps the ghee warm up and helps bind the dough.
Yields: 1/2 kilo (approx 30 cookies)
1 1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup besan (chickpea flour)
1 cup sugar (superfine. You can also powder larger grain sugar and then use it in the recipe)
2/3 cup of ghee (clarified butter)
1/4 tsp baking soda
Preheat your oven to 180 deg. Celsius and line a baking tray with some baking / parchment paper.
Mix the ghee and sugar till it is light and creamy. Scrape down the edges and bottom of the mixing bowl halfway through the process.
Add the rest of the ingredients (baking soda, all purpose flour and chickpea flour) to the mixing bowl and continue mixing till it forms a dough.
Shape into little cookies by rolling portions of the dough into a little ball and flatten it slightly. Place the cookies on the lined baking tray.
Bake for 12-15 minutes or till done. Your looking for a light colour on the edges.
Take it out of the oven and leave the cookies to cool on the tray itself.
When completely cool, store in an airtight container.
You can watch the video recipe here –
Sometime in August, we were celebrating a couple of birthdays at work and I decided I was going to bring a batch of these to the celebration. I was a little skeptical of how they would be received, but I shouldn’t have been. They disappeared. Not everyone had an opportunity to grab one, but some clever ones managed to get seconds, maybe thirds 😉 Those that had a chance to try them out, absolutely loved them. So turns out I didn’t have to worry about these at all. I’ve had a few people ask me for the recipe more than once. So I’m actually doing another post for it.
This is one of the easier treats I’ve made and if you have to take something sweet to a potluck, may I recommend making these. They will be an instant hit. Be warned, they are really moreish. You wont be able to stop at one.
(Makes 1 dozen)
200g Oreo cookies (each packet is 137g, I just used 2 packets)
60g cream cheese
200g chocolate (I used 100g milk chocolate and 100g dark chocolate but you could use all milk or all dark or any ratio you prefer)
1/4 cup Candy melts (I used Yellow melts)
Blitz the cookies in a food processor till it reaches a fine crumb state. (If you don’t have a food processor, place the cookies in a ziplock bag and pound on them using a rolling pin.)
Stir in the cream cheese and mix thoroughly.
Roll them into balls. Refrigerate them for an hour so that the firm up.
Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Melt the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl for 30 seconds and stir. Then as needed microwave in 30 second increments stirring inbetween till the chocolate melts. The stirring helps the chocolate melt.
Line a cookie sheet tray with parchment paper.
Dip the cookie balls in the melted chocolate. Using a fork, let the excess chocolate drip off and leave them to set on the parchment lined tray. You can serve them up as they are or decorate them with sprinkles or chocolate then do that at this stage and leave it to set.
If you want to use sprinkles to decorate them, sprinkle them on the truffles just after you dip them in chocolate.
If you want to drizzle some chocolate or candy melts over, microwave them in a microwave safe bowl according to the package instructions. Pour it into an icing bag or a small ziplock bag, snip off the tip of the bag and drizzle the chocolate over the truffles. Leave to set.
Nothing could be simpler than making these treats. But the end result is so satisfying. You get the subtle mintiness from the dark chocolate and the crunch from the crackers and all in all, I think its a fantastic combination. I know I’ll be making these often.
Makes a dozen
120-150g good quality dark chocolate
A few drops of peppermint extract (Its fairly strong, so start with a couple of drops and add gradually till you get the strength of flavor you’re looking for)
12 crackers (Ritz / Monaco)
Melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler.
Add the peppermint extract and stir well. Taste and adjust flavoring if needed.
(Note: If you accidentally add too much extract, you can still salvage the chocolate, simply add more melted chocolate to the bowl and mix. This should dilute the flavor.)
Dip the crackers in the chocolate and lift up using a fork. Let the excess chocolate drip off.
Place on a sheet of parchment paper and refrigerate for about 20 minutes to set. Alternatively, you could also leave these to set at room temperature.
Enjoy your very own almost homemade Thin Mints.
Don’t forget to stop by and check out what the others have brought to the table for Week 6 of our 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats series, hosted by Brenda of Meal Planning Magic.
Can you tell that I absolutely love bananas? They’ve always been one of my favorite fruits. If you’re new here and don’t believe me, check out these beauties – Banana Bread, Bananas Foster, Stuffed French Toast and Monkey Business. See I wasn’t kidding. Today I have yet another banana treat for you. And let me tell you that these were absolutely wonderful. Even though they were an eggless bake, they were light, moist and super yum. I made mini muffins this time just as an excuse to have a second helping, maybe even a third 😉 These were so great that the next time I whip these up, I’m going to make them the regular muffin size. I think that tells you how much we enjoyed them. I hope you do too! Oh, I love my new silicone mini muffin cups. They are so gorgeous, they just brighten up my day. Am I crazy to want them in every color available 🙂 ? Unfortunately I forgot to use them while baking the muffins but they do make a pretty picture. Can’t wait to bake with them.
Mini Eggless Banana Walnut Muffins
Yields 12 mini muffins
2-3 over ripe banans, mashed
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup natural unflavored yogurt
1/4 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
Preheat the oven to 180ºC and prepare your muffin mould
Mash the bananas in a bowl and add the oil, yogurt, sugar and vanilla and mix well.
Mix the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl. Mix well.
Add the mashed banana mix and fold it into the flour till incorporated. Don’t beat the batter.
Add the walnuts, reserving a few and stir them in gently.
Spoon the batter into paper lined muffin tins and sprinkle the reserved walnuts on top of them.
Bake for 20-30 minutes or till done.
Happy Thanksgiving everybody! Its nice to take a moment to be thankful for everything in our lives. I hope you have a wonderful time with family and friends!