Grandma Lily’s Mandelbrot and the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap

This was my first year participating in the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, and let me tell you what fun it was! I baked a staple in my house, my Great-Grandmother’s recipe for homemade mandelbrot (sort of like the Jewish form of biscotti).


It was very fun to package my cookies up and ship them all over the country. I sent packages to three outstanding bloggers: Kinsey Cooks, Pistachio Doughnut, and The Princess Pancake. I have checked out each of these blogs and can attest that they are all up to fabulous things πŸ™‚


I also received some absolutely delicious cookies! I received double chocolate pomegranate cookies from What Dress Code?, chocolate coconut cookies from The Pantry Key, and Orange Spice Rye Shortbread with Cranberries from Oh Dear Bakery. They were allΒ delicious.


If you get the chance to participate in the cookie swap next year, I would highly recommend it. It is a lot of fun, you receive some delicious cookies, and you know that it is all for a great cause. If you’d like to be added to the mailing list for the cookie swap, sign up here.

Grandma Lilly’s Mandelbrot


  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup and 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • Any other add-ins you’d like (chocolate chips, dried fruit, etc.)


  1. Preheat the oven to 325Β°.
  2. Blend the oil and 1 cup of the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the eggs, vanilla and almond extracts, and the orange peel and blend thoroughly.
  3. In another bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder, and 2 teaspoons of the cinnamon.
  4. Blend the flour mixture into the oil mixture.
  5. Mix in the sliced almonds and any add-ins you’d like.
  6. Divide the dough into 4 or 5 portions and shape each portion into an oval loaf on a lined baking sheet. Loaves should be about two inches wide and one inch high. Loaves should be about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets.
  7. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon onto the loaves.
  8. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove the loaves from the oven and cut them into 1 inch thick slices. Place the slices cut side down on the baking sheets and place them in the oven for another 5-10 minutes, depending on how crisp you like them.
  9. Transfer them to cooling racks and let them cool.
  10. Eat and enjoy!

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12 responses to “Grandma Lily’s Mandelbrot and the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap

  1. Hi Allison,

    I received these delicious cookies from you, and my husband and I really loved them. So much so that we are fighting to have the last one. It is really my favorite. I will sure have to make them till I savor the last ones. Thank you so much for the other goodies as well along with cookies. Hugs to you and happy holidays.

    • Hi Devangi! Wow, I’m so glad to hear that!! They are pretty easy to make if you’d like to try them yourself πŸ™‚ I hope you enjoyed them and have a very happy holidays πŸ™‚

  2. Oh my gosh YES!!!!!!!!!! So I actually haven’t received your cookies yet (they may be waiting in the package pile in the office) but I was clicking around to different blogs and when I saw your cookies, I was like, ‘man I want those.’ And then I saw my name!!! I am soooo excited. I love mandelbrot!! So thanks in advance–I’m sure they’re super delicious!

      • So I just picked up your package from the office last night–OMG! You sent so much stuff!! I love love love the Christmas sprinkles–those were literally on my grocery list to get on my next run. And your note was so sweet! Not to mention the COOKIES!!! I ate like 5 last night. And 2 this morning. Obsessed. Thank you so much!!! Also, what kind of add-ins did you add? I must know exactly how you made these! πŸ™‚

  3. Pingback: Momofuku-Inspired Shortbread | The Pancake Princess·

  4. Recipes are a great way to remember people from the past and every time these cookies are made I remember all the times I baked with Grandma Lilly in her house and then apartment in Brooklyn. Everything she made was fresh and from scratch. To some these may seem like standard biscotti (or mandelbrot) but using almond flour instead of half the regular flour is the key that gives these cookies are lovely crispness without being dry. Grandma Lily – you have touched a new generation!

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