3 large egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1 1/3 cups ground natural almonds
1/2 teaspoon almond or vanilla flavoring


1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil and coat them lightly with oil or vegetable cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl with an electric mixer, beat the 3 egg whites, 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt until soft peaks form. Very gradually beat in the 1 cup sugar until the whites hold firm peaks when the beaters are lifted. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the 1 1/3 cups ground almonds and 1/2 teaspoon almond or vanilla flavoring.
3. Drop the mixture by slightly heaping teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheets, leaving 1 inch between the cookies.
4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until the macaroons are firm and just starting to brown at the edges. Cool on the pan for 10 minutes and then remove to wire racks and cool completely.

These traditional Passover cookies are easy to make and open to endless variation. If you like, mix 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon into the ground almonds before folding them into the batter, or fold in a teaspoon of finely grated orange zest with the almond flavoring. For a special treat, dip the flat bottoms of the macaroons into melted dark chocolate; allow the chocolate to set before serving. The cookies may be made 4 to 6 days in advance and stored, tightly covered, at room temperature.

Almond Macaroons
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