We are just days away from Thanksgiving and even though I'm not doing the bulk of the cooking this year, I've got a hefty menu of desserts to make. I'm looking forward to going to my parent's house for the feast. Mom always has a lovely place setting for her dinner guests with colorful leaves and other natural elements. That's what inspired these almond pinecones. You can use them as edible decor at each place setting or bag them as takeaway gifts. Or you could just serve them on a dessert tray next to the pumpkin pie.
A version of these pinecones is the usual decoration for Bûche de Noël, but these are slightly larger and made with homemade almond paste. This paste only takes minutes to whip up and I use it for so much of my winter baking. It's my favorite filling for bear claws (remember these?).
You'll need a good amount of sliced almonds to make these. Try to choose the most perfect ones for the pinecone scales. These pinecones lay flat, so you're only covering one side with almonds. The work goes faster than you'd think!
These get a dusting of cocoa powder to give them a realistic pinecone appearance and the excess is dusted off with a pastry brush.
Almond paste confections always remind me of fall and winter holidays. I plan to make more of these for my December festivities. Click over to the Etsy Blog for get recipe and lots more step photos!