I was asked to make cookies for the Valentine’s day party for my son’s class. I though about linzer cookies as they are so pretty. As you may know, the main ingredients for linzer cookies are butter, flour, ground nuts and jam. Nowadays, a lot of people are allergic to nuts and I did not want to take the risk, especially when I bake for little kids. I made two batches, one with ground nuts, one with no nuts (basic butter cookies). Below is the traditional linzer cookies recipe which was adapted from Joy of Baking. Please go to my Halloween Witch Fingers Cookies post for the butter cookie recipe. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!
|2 Sticks (1 cup)
260g (2 cups)
150g (1 cup)
¼ – ½ cup
|Unsalted butter, softened
All purpose flour
Whole almonds (blanched)
Lemon zest (from one small lemon)
Powdered sugar (for dusting)
How to Blanch Almonds:
Bring a small pot of water to a boil (good enough to cover your almonds).
Place your raw almonds into the boiling water and boil them for just ONE minute. To avoid almonds from getting soft, one minute is sufficient. (picture 1)
Drain the almonds in a colander and rinse them with cold running water immediately. Pad dry the almonds with a paper towel. Skins will be slightly wrinkled.(picture 2)
Use your fingers to gently squeeze each almond out from the skin. (picture 3) Let almonds dry completely and discard the skins. (picture 4)
To ground the almonds, preheat oven to 350 ◦F. Place the almonds on a baking sheet and bake about 8-10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Place almonds in a food processor after they are cooled, along with 50 g of granulated sugar (save the remaining 100g sugar for making cookie dough). (When sugar is added, the mixture tends to loosen a bit, it won’t be too pasty). (picture 5) Process almonds until finely ground. (picture 6)
Making cookie dough:
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, salt, and lemon zest. Set aside. (Picture 1)
- Beat in a mixing bowl the butter and remaining 100g sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the vanilla extract and egg yolks. (Pictures 2-3)
- Add in ground almonds and then the flour mixture. (Picture 4)
- Divide the dough, form 2-3 balls and cover each ball with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm (30-60 minutes, or overnight). (Picture 5)
- Preheat oven to 350 ◦F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Remove one ball of dough from the refrigerator. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough until it is about 1/8 inch thick (you can make it thicker, but not any thinner). Using a cookie cutter of any shape to cut out the cookies. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet. (Picture 6)
- Use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the centers of half of the cookies on the baking sheet. Reroll any scraps and cut out the remaining cookies. Repeat with the second ball of dough. (Picture 7)
- Bake the cookies for about 12 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
- Place the cut out cookies on a baking sheet and lightly dust the tops with powdered sugar. (Picture 8)
- Spread a thin layer of jam on the bottom surface of the full cookie (top of cookie will face out). Place the cut-out cookie on top and gently sandwich them together. (Picture 9)
- Place the baking sheets with the unbaked cookies in the freezer for about 10 minutes to chill the dough. This will prevent the cookies from spreading and losing their shape when baked.
- The filled cookies will soften when stored. If you want the cookies to stay crisp, assemble the day of serving. The assembled cookies can be stored in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for several days.