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Gingerbread Florentines

With Christmas coming, we wanted to share one of our favorite Christmas cookie recipes with you! We've been serving these Gingerbread Florentines for years, and they are a favorite at the bake shop. Remember, we also have Holiday Cookie Boxes available daily for you to pick up for friends, teachers, your boss, coworkers and more!

Recipe is by Mimi Council.

Gingerbread Florentines Makes 22 sandwiches Dough 170 grams (1 1/4 cups) organic blanched slivered almonds 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt 142 grams (1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons) organic cane sugar 1/4 cup (57 grams) organic salted butter, chilled 2 tablespoons organic heavy whipping cream 28 grams (1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons) organic light corn syrup 1/2 teaspoon organic vanilla extract Filling 340 grams (heaping 2 1/3 cups) organic powdered sugar, sifted 3/4 cup (170 grams) organic salted butter, softened 21 grams (1 tablespoon) organic blackstrap molasses 1 to 2 teaspoons organic milk 1/2 teaspoon organic cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon organic cloves 1/2 teaspoon organic ginger Method To make the dough: Process the almonds in a food proces­sor for exactly 30 seconds. Transfer the ground almonds to a plastic mixing bowl, add the sea salt, and whisk together to combine.

In a medium pot over medium heat, mix together the cane sugar, butter, cream, and corn syrup with a high­ heat spatula, and cook until the sugar is dissolved. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture reaches 197°F to 200°F on a digital thermometer. Immediately remove from the heat. Pour the hot sugar mixture over the almonds, and stir several times. Add the vanilla extract, and stir to combine completely.

Let the mixture rest at room temperature for about 15 minutes, until it has cooled enough to touch.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 4 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Using your hands, form the dough into 44 balls and place them on the prepared cookie sheets (11 should fit on each cookie sheet): line up 3 balls of dough along each long side of the cookie sheet, then zigzag 5 additional balls of dough down the middle (if you have my book, Cookies for Everyone, see “Shaping,” page 167).

Bake for 11 minutes, or until golden­brown. Let cool com­pletely on the cookie sheets.

To make the filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the powdered sugar, but­ter, molasses, milk, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. Mix on low until combined, increase the speed to high, and mix for 1 minute more, or until light and fluffy. Transfer the filling to a piping bag fit­ ted with Ateco tip #864.

Pair the cookies together by size, and turn over every other one. Pipe a swirl of frosting onto each turned­ over cookie, starting around the outer edge and spiraling into the middle. Care­ fully sandwich the pairs.

Store in a cool dry place for up to 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.

High Altitude — Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

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