Today I’m continuing baking my way through this year’s Great British Baking Show challenges by tackling the florentines challenge from biscuit week. My version of this signature is a lemon and blueberry flavor. I had a bunch of different flavor combinations ideas, but the lemon and blueberry was the first that popped into my head so it’s what I’m going with.
If you’re not familiar with florentines-they’re a type of cookie with a high sugar content, so they spread and caramelize in the oven and get really crispy. They usually have some kind of dried fruit and nuts in them.
A quick confession before we get into the recipe: these cookies are crunchy, but they don’t quite have the snap Paul Hollywood always seems to be looking for. I tried a bunch of different combinations of sugars and syrups and solid ingredients to try to get the snap, but it still eludes me. These florentines are delicious, though, and they are delightfully crunchy, so I’m going with it.
When you’re chopping the almonds and blueberries, it’s tricky to describe how finely to chop the almonds. Here’s a picture for reference:
I normally use silicon baking mats when a recipe calls for lining a cookie sheet. I tried this recipe with both silicon mats and parchment paper, and the batch with parchment paper came out a lot crispier. If you aren’t going for max snap, silicon mats are good, but if you’re trying to get the most authentic bake-off experience, I recommend parchment paper.
A tip for the white chocolate coating on the bottom of these cookies-if you mix a small amount of oil into your chocolate once it’s melted, it helps it flow a bit to get a more even coating. This is my go-to trick for coating cake balls, and I figured it would apply here as well.
If you end up making this recipe, please let us know what you think! We’d love to hear from you in the comments below, or on social media. I’ll be posting my Bake-Off recreations on our recipes tab as they’re completed, and you can also sign up for our newsletter to get updates about new posts as they’re published.
Lemon and Blueberry Florentines
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tbsp honey
- juice of half a lemon
- 1/2 cup whole almonds
- 1/2 cup dried blueberries
- 1/2 cup flour
- zest of one lemon
- 1 tsp cardamom
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- drizzle of olive or vegetable oil
- Preheat the oven to 350°F
- Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper
- Combine the butter, sugar, honey, and lemon juice in a small saucepan and heat until the butter is just melted
- Pulse the almonds and dried blueberries in a food processor until the almonds are broken down into medium chunks. You don't want them to be super fine, but they also need to be small enough to mix well into the other ingredients
- Combine the chopped almonds and blueberries with the flour, lemon zest, and cardamom in a bowl. Pour the butter/sugar mixture into the solids and mix until just combined. Drop onto the prepared cookie sheets in 1/2 tbsp spoonfuls
- Bake for 8-12 minutes until the edges are starting to brown
- Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet.
- Once the cookies are cool, melt the white chocolate chips and drizzle mix in a small amount of oil. Dip the flat side of the cookies in the white chocolate and place on wax paper to cool. Drizzle more white chocolate on top of the cookies