Thin, delicate and crispy, these chocolate-dipped almond Florentines, also called lace cookies sometimes, are the perfect sweet treat for a fancy afternoon tea and will make a lovely gift for the holidays.
I can’t believe it took me so long to share with you one of my ultimate favorite cookie recipe. Although the origin is not very clear, it seems that Florentines were actually not invented in Florence (Italy). These lace cookies were instead created in France in the 17th Century, by a pastry chef from Florence for the Queen Anne de Bretagne. Florentines are now a popular sweet treat that you can find in many European countries.
I love these cookies because they’re thin, crispy, terribly addictive, but also because I have the dearest memories around them. This was years ago, when I still lived in France, and I remember we would eat them with a dear friend of mine while enjoying a cup of coffee and talking for hours, sharing bits of our lives. By the time, I would purchase the finest quality Florentines. Little did I know how easy they are to bake from scratch.
What is a Florentine?
Florentines are not your regular cookies. Halfway between a cookie and a candy, these lace cookies are incredibly thin and nutty, with a subtle chocolate coating (I use milk chocolate but dark chocolate can be considered too) and a subtle orange flavor. They’re also naturally gluten-free!
What is a Florentine made of?
Florentines are traditionally made of nuts and candied fruits coated in caramel sauce. The French version is very citrusy and involves candied orange peels that pair beautifully with the chocolate. Here are the basic ingredients you need for the recipe:
- Sliced almonds (or slivered almonds). For the crunchy bite!
- Candied orange peel. You can purchase candied orange or prepare your own by simply peeling an orange or mandarin and dice it thinly.
- Chocolate. Either dark or milk chocolate work in this recipe, just do you!
- Honey + sugar + heavy whipping cream. You will need these ingredients to make the toffee-like syrup that helps the ingredients stick together.
Equipment you need to make Florentine cookies
You don’t need much really, but I recommend:
- A cooking thermometer. It will be helpful to heat up the syrup to the right temperature (118°C/245°F). If you don’t have one, simply heat the mixture until bubbling, and turn off the heat before the syrup turns dark-brown.
- A baking sheet or a muffin pan (see below for more details).
How to ensure the Florentines keep their shape?
The tricky part of the recipe is to make sure your Florentines keep their shape. Here you have two options:
- You can either spoon the slivered almonds in small amounts onto the baking sheet.
- Or you can drop the ingredients into greased parchment liners or using a non-stick muffins pan.
The second option will give a regular shape to all your cookies while the first one will ensure they remain flat (this is my preferred version for crispier cookies, even if they may spread a little bit).
More festive cookies:
If you loved these Florentines, then you should also try my almond tuiles cookies (pronounce almond tweel)! Another French classic to die for and that also makes a great gift during Holidays time. You may also love:
- Easy Sugar Cookies
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix In A Jar
- Hazelnut Chocolate Lava Cookies
- Healthy Oat Peanut Butter Cups
Chocolate-Dipped Almond Florentines
- Prep Time: 45 mins
- Cook Time: 10 mins
- Total Time: 55 mins
- Yield: 20 florentines 1x
- Category: Cookies
- Cuisine: French
Thin, delicate and crispy, these chocolate-dipped almond florentines are the perfect tiny cookies for any special occasion.
- 2/3 cup (130g) sugar
- 1/4 cup (70g) honey
- 1/4 cup (70g) heavy cream
- 2.5 ounces (70g) candied orange or mandarin
- 5.3 ounces (150g) sliced almonds
- 4.2 (120g) milk chocolate
- Heat honey, cream and sugar in a small saucepan until the temperature reaches 245°F (118°C). If you don’t have a cooking thermometer, simmer for about 5 minutes but do not let the mixture turn brown.
- Remove from the heat and add the candied orange/mandarin and the sliced almonds. Stir gently until coated.
- Preheat the oven to 340°F (170°C).
- Spoon one teaspoon of the batter on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, or ideally in a silicone muffin cup so that the cookie keeps its shape.
- Bake for about 5 to 10 minutes, or until golden. Let cool, then invert the cookies.
- Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in the microwave and stir every 20 seconds until melted and smooth.
- Dip the bottom of each florentine in the melted chocolate, or use a spoon for coating if easier. Invert and allow the chocolate to set. Let cool and enjoy!
Keywords: Chocolate Almond Florentines
Did you make this recipe?
Lastly, if you make this Chocolate-Dipped Almond Florentines, be sure to leave a comment and give this recipe a rating, letting me know how you liked it. And of course, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Thank you and enjoy!