1/2 cup butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom or cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup chopped almonds
3/4 cup finely snipped dried apricots
1 egg yolk (optional)
1 teaspoon water (optional)
In large mixing bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds or until softened. Add sugar, baking powder and cardamom or cinnamon. Beat until combined. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. By hand, stir in any remaining flour with the almonds and apricots. Divide the dough in half, If necessary. Cover and chill for 1 to 2 hours or until easy to handle.
Shape each portion into a 9-inch long log; place about 4 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Flatten the logs slightly until about 2 inches wide. If desired, for a shiny surface, stir together the egg yolk and water and brush onto the logs.
Bake in a 375 degree F oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted near the centers comes out clean. Cool on the cookie sheet for about 1 hour.
With a serrated knife, cut each log diagonally into 1/2-inch thick slices. Lay the slices, cut side down, on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 375 degree F oven for 8 minutes and then turn slices over; bake for an additional 8 to 10 minutes more until dry and crisp (do NOT under-bake). Cool on wire rack.
Yields 32 slices.