Almond meal makes these cookies tender and rich. Almond slivers provide a contrasting crunch.
1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
slivered almonds (do not pretoast)
Mix the flour, almond meal, and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and flavorings with a mixer. Add the dry ingredients and mix at low speed until just combined. Form the dough into a disk and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Break off spoonfuls of dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Place them about 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Place three almond slivers horizontally on each ball (to look like claws) and press to flatten slightly. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a wire rack.