Amaretto, not just a drink.

So I got to chatting with a work friend the other evening, she enjoys food and most of her favourite flavours match my own. As we were in a deep recipe sharing debate, up came the word Amaretto. I do love the flavour, as does she, but I have always been lazy with regards to experimenting with this delicious flavour in my cooking. So I have made it a mission to look at what you can do with this Italian almond flavoured liqueur.

I decided to go simple for the first experiment, with some delicious cookies. Much tastier than the store bought ones.

Here is a little history to go with it.

Amaretto is a sweet, almond-flavoured, Italian liqueur. It is made from a base of apricot pits or almonds, sometimes both. In 1525, a Saronno church commissioned one of Leonardo da Vinci‘s pupils, to paint their sanctuary with frescoes. He found his inspiration in a young widowed innkeeper, who became his model. Out of gratitude and affection, the woman wished to give him a gift. Her simple means did not permit much, so she steeped apricot kernels in brandy. So Amaretto was born.

Cooking

  • Amaretto is added to desserts, including ice cream, which enhances the flavour of the dessert with almonds and complements chocolate. Tiramisu, a popular Italian cake, is often flavoured with either real amaretto or alcohol-free amaretto aroma.
  • Savoury recipes which call for it usually focus on meat, such as chicken.
  • A few shots of amaretto can be added to pancake batter for a richer flavour.
  • Amaretto is often added to almondine sauce for fish and vegetables.
  • Amaretto is often added to whipped cream.
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