Yachting puts things in perspective. All along the Erie Canal people marveled on Umineko, a 43’ catamaran’s size. She was enormous. In places it was difficult to find places to moor, we couldn’t take the Chamblee canal because we were too wide! A big fish in a small pond.
As we sailed into Charleston, Charleston City Marina informed us over the VHF radio that we would have to stay on their megadock. Another boat was staying in slip they had Umineko scheduled to moor in. Docking at the megadock was a reality check. We were dwarfed; by far the smallest boat on the pier.
But even the goliath power boats lining the pier looked tiny next to Rising Sun, the world’s 3rd largest private vessel. Why anyone would need a private yacht the size of a city block that employed a 45-person crew is beyond me but apparently David Geffin likes his toys.
Still, even a yacht that size, even the largest tanker, the most massive ocean liner is minuscule in the middle of the ocean. Perhaps that’s why they stay at the dock so much of the time.
But more than simply the home of “the megadock,” Charleston is a culinary epicenter, or at least that’s what every resident and visitor told me. And being in a food-loving city I felt like I needed to step up to the challenge and bake some unique cookies.
I adore rosewater and have since I first tasted baklava. I feel like it isn’t used nearly enough in cooking and I wanted to incorporate it into more of mine. The last time I was in an Indian grocery I picked up a bottle and had been waiting to use it. This was the perfect opportunity.
These shortbread-like cookies melt in your mouth. The delicate rose taste gives them an almost an angelic flavor. The meaty texture and flavor of the whole almond in the center of the cookie rounds the dessert out nicely.
Rosewater Almond Cookies
- 1 c butter
- 1/2 c sugar
- 2 ½ c flour
- 1/2 t salt
- 1 T rose water
- Whole almonds
- Preheat oven to 350◦ F (170◦ C)
- Cream together butter, sugar, vanilla, and almond extract
- Mix in flour and salt
- Form into walnut-sized balls
- Press gently to flatten the ball slightly
- Push almond into center
- Bake for 10 minutes or until just a touch of golden-brown appears around the sides of the cookies
- Allow to cool 20 minutes