Toots are popular Nowruz cookies—like Christmas, Iranian New Year has its own special cookies and confections that families prepare together around the holiday. I grew up rolling these precious, melty treats with Maman and Maman Bozorg each year. Toot means “mulberry” and the name refers to the shape of the cookies. They require no baking, which makes them almost feel like eating cookie dough.
Get the backstory to this recipe by listening to Roya Shariat and Gita Sadeh describe their cookie traditions on a recent episode of Seasoned.
Soft Almond Flour Cookies (Toots)
- 1-1/4 cups (150 g) blanched slivered almonds
- 1 cup (120 g) confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tbsp rosewater
- 1/4 cup (50 g) granulated sugar
- Gel food coloring (optional)
- Slivered pistachios or almonds, for decorating
- If you’re using blanched slivered almonds, put them in a food processor and pulse a few times to break them up. Let the food processor run for about 5 minutes, or until you have an almond paste resembling marzipan. Transfer the paste to a medium bowl. Add the confectioners’ sugar and use a rubber spatula to combine. Gradually add the rosewater, little by little, and slowly and gently knead, so the dough just comes together. Put the dough in a resealable plastic bag or an airtight container and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Pour the granulated sugar into a small bowl and set aside.
- After the dough has rested, if you want to dye it with gel food coloring, divide it according to how many colors you’re using, and make sure you keep the dough covered, so it doesn’t dry out. Wearing gloves to avoid stains, flatten the dough onto a tray or platter. Put a small amount of gel on the tip of a knife, add it to the dough, and very gently knead the dough to distribute the color throughout. If you need more food coloring, add it in small amounts, gently kneading it through, so the dough doesn’t get too moist and sticky.
- After dyeing the dough, or after your undyed dough has rested, shape your toots. Using your hands, pinch a ½ in (13 mm) size ball from the dough and roll it into an oblong shape (like a mulberry or blackberry), using your fingers to press and pinch the dough into the right shape.
- Press a slivered pistachio or almond into the top or bottom side of each toot. One by one, place the toots in the sugar and roll them around to coat. Repeat until you’ve used all the dough.
- Arrange the toots on a platter and serve alongside warm tea. Toots will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.