Process the sugar and salt in a food processor until it looks powdery and a little finer, 30 to 60 seconds. Add the almonds and process until they’re finely chopped, about 20 seconds. Add the butter and the vanilla and almond extracts. Pulse until the butter is smooth, scraping the bowl as necessary. Add the flour and pulse until a soft dough begins to form around the blade. Transfer the dough to a large bowl and stir briefly with a rubber spatula to be sure it’s evenly mixed. Portion the dough into equal thirds. If you have a scale, weigh each third; each should weigh 10-1/2 to 11 oz. Make the variations for the type of cookie you are making (Chocolate Thumbprints, Hazelnut Almond Crescents, or Almond Sablés) before chilling the dough.
Photo: Scott Phillips