Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Day 4: Raspberry Linzer Cookies

These cookies were a little time consuming to make, but I think they look so elegant that I couldn't resist. I really like how the jam compliments the delicate cookie texture. To make a little more work for myself, I doubled the recipe that is posted below, as I wasn't sure if 2 dozen sandwich cookies would be enough. I actually made the dough 5 days in advance, and let it sit well-wrapped in the fridge until baking day. It seemed to work out just fine, and I was happy to skip the mixing step when it came to baking and assembling all of these cookies.

Raspberry Linzer Cookies
from Estee at One Ginormous Adventure
makes 2 dozen "sandwich" cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
2 eggs, separated
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
confectioners' sugar (for rolling)
1/2 cup ground almonds
3/4 cup raspberry preserves (or jam of your choosing, I recommend a red jam though)


First of all, separate your eggs. You will need the yolks for the cookie dough and the egg whites for an egg white wash used later. Set the bowl with the egg whites aside.

Cream together the 1 cup (2 sticks) of the softened butter and 2/3 cup of the granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add the 2 eggs yolks, one at a time. Make sure that each has been completely combined. Continue to beat until fluffy.

In a medium bowl, sift the 2-1/2 cups of all-purpose flour and the 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Slowly add to the butter mixture. Do NOT over mix this. Just mix until the flour has been incorporated. You will be rolling these cookies and will be handling the dough a lot, so you don't want to do to much to it at this point.

Shape the dough into a ball. Cover and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes.

Once the dough has chilled, break off half (or even a quarter) of the dough and put it onto a surface that has been dusted with confectioners' sugar. At this point, you will need to preheat your oven to 350 degrees. You will also need a 2-1/2 inch circle cutter and then a smaller one for the center. I used a wine glass for my circles and then small holiday cookie cutters for the center.

Roll the dough out to 1/8 of an inch. That's pretty thin. I don't think I rolled my dough quite thin enough (oops!).
Half of the circles are going to have a cut-out in the center. This will be the top cookie. Make sure you make the same number of top cookies as bottom cookies!

This is where you are going to need the reserved egg whites and the ground almonds. Combine the ground almonds and the remaining sugar.

Brush some of the egg white mixture onto the "top" cookies (the ones with the shape cut out). Then sprinkle on some of your ground almond/sugar mixture. Place your cookies on parchment paper lined cookie sheets.You can see the two halves here. The egg wash and almond mixture only go onto the "top" cookie. Bake at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes. Watch these carefully and be sure to check on them at six minutes. The cookies will be lightly browned and smell amazing. Move to a cooling rack to cool completely.Once they have cooled, take the bottom of your cookie and spread a few teaspoons of the raspberry jam (or the jam of your choosing).

Top with the cookie that has the almond mixture. Enjoy your artwork.REVIEW:
These are almost too pretty to eat, no? I really like how elegant these cookies look. And even though they were kind of a lot of work, I think I will make them again next year. One change I might make is to skip the ground almonds on some cookies. I think the almonds really add something, but some of Josh's family has nut allergies. By skipping the simple topping, more people I know would be able to enjoy them!

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