I'm looking at the world through flour-covered lashes (I threw my rose-colored glasses away).
My friend Kate, the Parade Princess and soon-to-be Mrs. (!), came over on Sunday and we had a little baking party. On the menu? Triple layer mint s'more brownies, christmas cherry cookies, and raspberry linzer cookies. And chili. And jalapeno pepperjack scones. It was Christmas, come early! The final verdict was that the raspberry linzer cookies were the day's winner. In second place? The chili/scone combo. The other two recipes were a good experiment, but I won't share those recipes here, as I don't think they were a huge success. The scones will make an appearance on here soon!
The raspberry linzer cookies come to us courtesy of my recipe thieving from Jenna (yes, she is the usual victim). The only tricky thing about this recipe is that you'll have to purchase a special cookie cutter. I found mine at Sur la Table for $6. They have different middle shapes; I went with the heart for a sweet little holiday treat. These made about 4 dozen cookies, but your yield will vary depending on the size of your linzer cookie cutter. Mine was really small!
1 cup white sugar
½ cup (1 stick) softened butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 jumbo egg (high altitude folks - make sure it' s a jumbo, otherwise they'll be too dry)
½ tsp. vanilla
1 cup finely ground hazelnuts (throw 'em in the food processor)
1 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
½ tsp. salt
¼ cup raspberry jam
½ cup powdered sugar
Cream together butter and sugar until. You can use a stand mixer, hand mixer, or your muscles and a wooden spoon to do this step. Add in the egg and the vanilla and continue to mix until everything is well combined. In a separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Mix, then add to wet ingredients and combine.
Lay out a sheet of plastic wrap, then pile dough on it. Shape into a log (doesn't have to be even close to perfect), then wrap tightly with wrap. Place in fridge and chill for about 2 hours.
Heat oven to 350 degrees, then pull dough out of fridge. Cut the log in half and place half back in fridge. Roll the other half of the dough out on a lightly floured surface. Use a rolling pin to roll thin. Use your fluted cookie cutter (with the crinkly edges) to cut out small circles. Lay these circles on a flour-dusted baking sheet. Bake for about 12 minutes, until edges are lightly browned. Move to wire rack to cool.
While the bottoms of the cookies are baking, roll out the second half of the dough. Punch these out with the fluted and shaped cookie cutters. These will be your tops. Bake these on a flour-dusted baking sheet for 12 minutes as well. Cool on rack.
While cookie tops bake, spread cookie bottoms with raspberry jam. You don't want to much jam, or the cookies will get goopey and messy. You also don't want too little jam, or the cookies won't stick together quite right. Go for a moderate amount! Once tops are baked, dust with powdered sugar, then press tops down on top of raspberry jam-coated bottoms.
These cookies are so pretty. They will make great gifts and look so fabulous all stacked up and wrapped in pretty paper with a little Christmas bow.