This recipe comes by way of London-based restaurant Ottolenghi, then through Paris, where former Chez Panisse pastry chef and acclaimed cookbook author David Lebovitz wrote about it on his popular blog.
You can find the recipe, including Lebovitz' helpful tips at this link.
Unlike Lebovitz, I did in fact use orange zest rather than orange oil. However, I almost wished I had the extract on hand, because some bites of orange zest imparted a more acidic than sweet taste.
Would I make this again?
Yes, however, they weren't quite as easy to make as I thought. Sure, the recipe consists of throwing things in a bowl and mixing them. And yes, there was no danger of these cookies spreading as you watch in horror.
In the future, I will try to have a lighter hand with the chocolate to give it a more elegant finish. But who am I kidding? Chances are, I will become impatient and try to work faster than the hardening chocolate. Either way, these Florentines are delicious.
However, next time I will use my Silpat, as some of the cookies stuck the to parchment paper and I did not have a 100 per cent success rate. I suppose you could also use milk chocolate but I think dark chocolate is a better match for the almonds.
You could even make these in advance, seal them tightly, and have them ready when you serve coffee to unexpected guests.
Or even consider placing them atop a scoop or two of ice cream when you want to jazz up a simple dessert.
Four stars out of five. The ones that did survive the parchment paper were crispy, delicate, and the dark chocolate was the perfect companion to the almonds.
For those of you out there who worry about gluten, it's also gluten-free. In short, an ideal cookie. If it hadn't been for the stickiness factor, I would have given these full points.