Heavy cream, butter, honey, sliced almonds, chocolate, strong coffee, chopped candied cherries and orange peel, sugar, a little flour and butter, butter, butter. What’s not to love?
This recipe starts with boiling a thick syrup of butter, cream, honey and sugar, then adding the candied fruit, nuts and flour. Dollops of batter spread into little circles bubble as they bake and become lacy thin wafers. After they cool coat their smooth undersides with a glaze of melted butter and semi-sweet chocolate mixes with extra-strong coffee. Yum! Crisp, chewy and buttery, Florentines are decadently sweet and delicious.
Sharon Tyler Herbst says that Italian and Austrian bakers vie for the credit for creating these confections, but elsewhere a good argument is made for laying the blame at the feet of Caterina de’Medici and the French patisseries under her considerable, if long ago, influence. Actually it’s the name she probably sprinkled about. That and her love of spinach, which may just be the antidote for these Florentines!