Citrus Filled Almond Pillows (Cuscinetti)
1 egg yoke 1 recipe Almond paste 3/4 cup Citron Preserves 1/2 cup powdered sugar, divided
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two large baking sheets.
In a large mixing bowl, using your hands, work the yolk into the almond paste until well combined.
Turn the dough out onto the work surface that has been lightly dusted with some of the powder sugar, and divide into 4 equal pieces. Pat each piece into rectangle about 8 inches long by 3 inches wide. Spread one quarter of the preserves lengthwise down the center of the dough and fold the sides over to enclose the filling, overlapping slightly. With a sharp knife, cut each log into 8 equal pieces.
Place the pieces 2 inces apart on the greased baking sheets. Sift the remaining powdered sugar over the cookies and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown.
Almond Paste: 3 1/3 cups blanched whole almonds 2 cups sugar 2 tablespoons honey 2 teaspoons vanilla 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract 2 eggs, beaten lightly to blend 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest pinch of salt
To make the almond paste using a food processor, grind the almonds and sugar together, in two batches, to a fine powder. Do not overprocess, or the almonds will become oily, making the resulting pastry heavy and greasy. Return all the almonds to the processor and, with the machine running, add the remaining ingredients. Continue to process until the paste comes together in a ball.
Immediately wrap the finished paste tightly in plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out.