I probably should have held off until December to post this because it’s the perfect “cookie exchange” cookie, but I’m not that patient and life is short. Plus, this recipe is perfect for fall when my favorite nuts are in season.
Of course if you live somewhere where different nuts are in season, use those. In Italy, they make a similar version of these with hazelnuts. The Italian cookie is called Brutti ma Buoni aka “Ugly But Good”, but I wouldn’t call these ugly. Let’s just say they have character. What they are is very, very chewy. Mine were even chewier than expected but I kind of liked the contrast of chewy dates with the crispy light meringue and crunchy pecans. They also seem to keep well, as I’ve been storing mine in a tin on the counter and they taste just as good on day 3 as day 1.
- 2 large egg whites
- 1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
- 1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped**
- 2/3 cup finely chopped dates
- 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. and Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Beat in the sugar a few tablespoons at a time. Stir in the pecans, dates and chocolate chips.
- With a generously rounded teaspoon, drop 12 mounds of cookie dough onto each baking sheet. Set one sheet on the middle rack and one on the lower rack and bake for 15 minutes.
- After 15 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 275 degrees F, shift the baking sheets so that the sheet on the bottom is now on the top and vice versa. bake for another 15 minutes at 275 degrees F.
- Turn off oven and let the cookies sit in the closed “off” oven for about two hours.