Susan Miura's Amaretti Cookies

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Faith, family, and a passion for nature, writing, and photography nurture Susan Miura’s soul. She loves to visit the world’s amazing places and has a travel bucket list that includes the Northern Lights, sunsets anywhere, Jamaica’s Luminous Lagoon, and basically anything that glows. Her background includes several years as a newspaper and television reporter in the Chicago suburbs and Albuquerque before switching to public relations. Susan is the author of three young adult novels: Healer (2018), Shards of Light (just released), and Show Me a Sign (2014). Her poetry and wildlife photos are featured in her children’s book, Pawprints in the Snow: How God Protects Animals from the Cold (2017), and she has short stories published in three anthologies. Susan is president of the American Christian Fiction Writers Chicago Chapter and a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Learn more about Susan HERE.
 
Susan's Latest Book Release: Shards of Light (Book 2 in the Healer series)

Ice crystalizes around Shilo’s heart, threatening to plunge her into darkness as she’s gripped by evil. And it is only Week Two of her summer-long exile to Sicily. But Shilo will face the evil, and the torment of missing Kenji, because the reason she crossed an ocean is worth that and more.  Becoming a Healer has already led to danger and heartache, but it is nothing compared to what lies ahead. High on Mt. Etna, in a centuries-old convent, Shilo will unravel the mysteries of her healing power, discover the horrors of human trafficking, witness heroic feats propelled by courage and faith, and suffer the unbearable pain of another loss.

On a ballet stage halfway around the world, Melody grand jetés into a life-changing moment. But after years of strenuous preparation, something goes terribly wrong. When she regains consciousness, her ballet dreams lie shattered, piercing Melody with shards of hopelessness. What is life without ballet? And how will she survive this ordeal without Shilo? As Melody struggles to piece together the fragments of her broken life, she reflects on the Nigerian-Russian parents she never knew, and a pair of hauntingly familiar ebony eyes. Buy Susan's book HERE.


Susan's Amaretti Cookies

October is Italian Heritage month, and these soft, chewy Italian cookies represent my Sicilian heritage and are among my top favorite desserts. They are also one of the foods mentioned in Shards of Light, which is partly set in Sicily. They may appear plain, but they explode with almond flavor and have a fantastic texture. You’ll be amazed at what can result from just three ingredients. 

1 cup castor (superfine) sugar*
2 large egg whites
1 8 oz. can (or 7 oz. tube) almond paste (DO NOT use almond filling, which is very different.)

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. This is important, as these cookies will stick to the pan without parchment paper. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place sugar and almond paste into mixing bowl and crumble together with your fingers, then use a mixer to finish combining. Add egg whites in two batches and continue mixing until batter is smooth: 3 to 4 minutes.

Use a tablespoon or piping bag to mound batter onto cookie sheet, about two inches apart. At this point, you can place them in the oven “as is” or choose to add a little color or texture with sprinkles, colored sugar, sliced or slivered almonds or pecans, or unsweetened coconut. These cookies are already very sweet, so if you add a sweet topping, do it sparingly. Bake for 13 -15 minutes. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before removing. A metal spatula works best. Place on rack to finish cooling before storing in an airtight container.

*Caster, or superfine sugar, is just smaller granules of regular sugar. You can buy it at most grocery stores or easily make it by pulsing regular granulated sugar in your blender or Magic Bullet. Be careful not to go too long or you’ll have powdered sugar.