Friday, February 13, 2009

Linzer Cookies

Sweet tarts for your Sweetheart.  

This recipe has origins in Austria centuries ago.  And the original Linzer cookie wasn't actually a cookie, it was a torte made with ground almonds in the dough and filled will black currant  preserves.  But despite these differences, this modern variant of the torte is divine to eat and pretty to look at.


1 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cup sugar, divided
2 eggs, separated
2 1/2 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup ground almonds
3/4 cup  preserves (Raspberry Preserve Recipe)

Cream butter in mixing bowl.

Add 2/3 cup sugar.  Beat until light and fluffy.

Add yolks--beating well after each.

Combine flour and salt--gradually add to mixer.  Form a ball and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Dust counter with confectioner's sugar.  Roll dough to 1/8 inch thickness--cut shapes (I used hearts but you could use rounds or other shapes--be sure to have a smaller version to cut the "window" out.)  

Be sure you have an equal number of bottoms. . . 

. . . and tops.

Beat egg whites until frothy and brush onto bottom cutouts.  If you are using whole almonds process them in the food processor with the remaining sugar--the sugar keeps the almonds from clumping into paste.  sprinkle the mixture over bottoms--atop the egg white.  

**by not combining the almonds in the dough it allows you to leave it out should you choose not to use nuts.  You may also use ground hazelnuts. I have also seen hazelnut varieties that use Nutella as filling instead of preserves.

Place on greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees F for 
6 - 8 minutes.  Cool on wire rack.

Spread about two teaspoons of preserve on eat bottom cookie. . .

. . . powder the "window" tops with confectioner's sugar. . .

. . . and assemble.

Present to your sweetheart. . . or eat them all yourself.  I won't judge you.

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