6 eggs
1 pound butter
2 1/2 cups sugar, separated
6 cups flour
1 lemon
1 cup coarsely chopped almonds

Hard boil 3 eggs, press the yolks through a fine sieve. (These whites are not used in this recipe.) Cream butter and add 1 1/2 cups sugar; reserve remaining 1 cup sugar. Separate remaining three eggs. Reserve whites in refrigerator. Make zest from 1/2 the lemon peel. When butter and sugar are light-colored, add the three sieved yolks alternately with flour and the three raw egg yolks. Add the lemon zest. The dough will be stiff, and for complete mixing you will have to knead it manually. If it is still too soft to roll out though, put it in the refrigerator overnight.

Heat oven to 350 F.

Mix remaining 1 cup sugar and chopped almonds. Roll out to 1/8 inch and cut with cookie cutter as desired. Brush tops with reserved egg whites and sprinkle with sugar and almonds. Bake on parchment paper for 10-15 minutes, or until very slightly brown.


This cookie falls apart in your mouth. The delicacy of the texture is beyond any other cookie I have met. The taste is pleasant, with a very faint hint of lemon (the original recipe says you may substitute 2 teaspoons brandy). My only complaint about this aristocratic cookie is its overly faint flavor. It would benefit from a teaspoon or two of vanilla and a half-teaspoon of salt, and perhaps whatever other flavorings you like. (See previous recipe with just the right amount of nutmeg, as an example.) I also don’t think that the sugar and almonds on top add very much.

This makes a lot of cookies. If you use a smallish cookie cutter, you will probably get at least twelve dozen. The recipe could be cut in half (with a little difficulty due to the 3 raw egg yolks) if you want fewer.

The sieved cooked egg yolks are interesting. I haven’t met that before, either. The purpose seems to get a little more eggy umami into the cookie while preserving its delicate texture. Raw egg, when it cooks, gives firmness and body to baked goods, which do not necessarily improve a cookie.

I tried making this cookie with a favorite flavor combination of mine, vanilla and lemon rind. I added 2 teaspoons of vanilla, 2 teaspoons of lemon zest (about a whole lemon’s worth), and 1/2 teaspoon salt. I brushed the tops with egg white and added a pecan half. The results were superb.

Next week: our last recipe this year, Jelly Centers, from 1948.


First photo below: Gourmet.  Second photo: mine

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