The first time I tried Ricciarelli was a couple of weeks ago at a friends house and it was love at first bite! When I found out that they were homemade, gluten free and easy to make I had to have the recipe, so he wrote the steps down on my phone and I've been waiting for a chance to make these ever since. They are crunchy with a divine chewy centre.
I decided to alter the recipe to make it ever so slightly healthy as it calls for quite a lot of sugar. So my version uses homemade coconut icing sugar instead of shop bought icing sugar. Coconut sugar has a much lower glycemic index than regular sugar because in contains inulin which apparently slows down the absorption of sugar into the blood, though this doesn't mean that it is ok to have it all the time as it is still sugar!
Coconut Icing Sugar Recipe - inspired by this
5 cups coconut sugar 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder or cornstarch (I used arrowroot powder)
Put the arrowroot or cornstarch in a blender or food processor for about a minute or until the sugar grinds down to a powdery consistency. Keep the lid on the blender/food processor until it settles or your kitchen will be covered in powder. **This will make more than the required amount of sugar needed for the recipe so you will have some left over to use later on.**
Ingredients (makes approx. 20)
250 grams ground almonds 250 grams coconut icing sugar / regular icing sugar 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 2 organic free range egg whites 1 teaspoon vanilla extract / 1 vanilla pod
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg whites until they are semi-solid. Add the vanilla to the dry ingredients. With a metal spoon fold the egg whites into the dry ingredients until you get a sticky even texture. Scoop a walnut sized piece of dough and roll it into a ball then gently flatten it in your hands, place on a lined baking tray and shape into a diamond shape. Continue until you run out of dough. Sprinkle them with a bit of icing sugar and pop them in the over for 10 - 12 minutes. Once they are done take them out the oven and leave on the baking tray to cool. If you try to pick them up too soon they will fall apart and not set properly. (I can assure you that this is the hardest part of the recipe). And finally...enjoy!