Lemon-Espresso Bites

For a twist on the tradition of serving Italian coffee with a strip of lemon peel, sandwich rich chocolate-espresso ganache between lemon cookies.

  • 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.


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