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Lemon-Espresso Bites

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Makes about 16
Lemon-Espresso Bites

Photography: Beatriz Da Costa

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2005


  • 1 cup sliced blanched almonds
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 3 large egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1 lemon, plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice (preferably Meyer)
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder


  1. Process almonds and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl; stir in confectioners' sugar. Put egg whites and salt into bowl of mixer fitted with whisk attachment; beat on medium until soft peaks form. Add remaining granulated sugar; beat until stiff peaks form. Mix in vanilla and lemon juice. Fold in almond mixture in 2 batches. Stir in zest.

  2. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Put batter in a pastry bag fitted with a 1 1/2- inch round tip (Ateco tip #803 or #804); pipe 2-inch rounds onto a nonstick baking sheet. Bake until golden and set, about 15 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack.

  3. Bring cream to a boil in a pan. Pour over chocolate and espresso in a heatproof bowl; whisk. Transfer to freezer and stir occasionally until thickened, about 6 minutes.

  4. Spread 2 teaspoons filling onto bottom of half of the cookies. Sandwich with remaining cookies. Dust with confectioners' sugar.

Reviews (8)

  • Kalmiacedar 31 Jan, 2014

    Recipe totally didn't work out. It turned into not-so-delicious macarons type cookies. Super bummed.

  • momtothreeboys 7 Apr, 2011

    Made these for a cookie exchange this year and they were incredible! I wish I could remember which wine they were paired with. By far the best of the four cookies I made for that exchange. Light, yet rich. Wonderful texture, easier to make than I expected. Just make sure your bowl is really clean and cold before trying to peak the egg whites.

  • mykele 6 Apr, 2011

    lilbearstudley, You just frost 16 cookies and
    put together with the remaing 16 cookies.

  • lilbearstudley 6 Apr, 2011

    I'm really wanting to make this recipe, but I have a question about serving size before I do: would I be piping 32 rounds to make the 16 sandwich cookies?

  • janemei 6 Apr, 2011

    @Jen: have you had success beating egg whites before? They do take some time before they start getting foamy and peaking, especially if you are doing this by hand. Otherwise, is it possible that there was some egg yolk in there? Bits of egg yolk make it almost impossible for egg whites to whip up properly.

  • JenLikestoCook 20 Jun, 2010

    I was really looking forward to baking this recipe, however, the cookies didn't form at all. I followed the recipe to the tee but I never saw the soft peaks form in Instruction No. 1.

  • cookiesgalore 10 Jun, 2009

    how about adding peach or coconut flavoring to this gluten-free recipe? that would be great too.

  • cookiesgalore 10 Jun, 2009

    would like to use this filling "in" or "on" a peach cake.

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