The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies. This post focuses on the Florentines. My other post focuses on the panna cotta.
Florentines originated in Florence, Italy. My first exposure to them was the ones you find at Trader Joe's. Most recipes call for minced nuts in the caramelized sugar mixture, but this one calls for quick oats. Both taste the same since it is the caramelized sugar that is the real flavor.
This couldn't be an easier cookie to make. The most 'difficult' part would be to watch the oven to make sure you get them just the right color/doneness. I actually ended up switching the trays on the racks halfway through because the bottom rack was going so much faster. This worked well for me.
I would suggest being careful when spreading the chocolate if you want to make sandwiches. Since the cookies are so lacy/holey, the chocolate leaks through. You just want a thin layer.
2/3 cup unsalted butter
2 cups quick oats
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup plain (all purpose) flour
1/4 cup dark corn syrup
1/4 cup whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1½ cups dark or milk chocolate
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Melt the butter in a pan or microwave. Remove from heat. Add all ingredients but chocolate and mix thoroughly. Drop dough by teaspoons onto parchment. Slightly flatten them with the spoon. Bake 6-8 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool on pan.
Melt chocolate in microwave or on top of a double boiler.
Spread chocolate on the bottom of one cookie and sandwich together to the bottom of another cookie. Or you can just drizzle chocolate along the tops of the individual cookies. Let cool for chocolate to harden. Enjoy!