Friday, April 3, 2009

Cookies you just have to try . . .

Pecan Linzer Cookies with Cherry Filling

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup pecan halves, toasted
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup cherry jam, strained

1. Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl; set aside. Pulse pecans, confectioners' sugar, salt, and cinnamon in a food processor until finely ground (but not wet); transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.

2. Add butter and granulated sugar; mix on medium speed until fluffy. Mix in vanilla and egg. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture; mix until combined. Halve dough; shape into disks. Wrap in plastic; refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Working with 1 disk at a time, roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8 inch thick. Refrigerate 20 minutes. Cut out squares with a 2-inch fluted cutter. Cut out centers of half the squares with a 1/2-inch heart cutter; reroll scraps. Space 2 inches apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake squares and hearts until pale golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to racks to cool.

4. Meanwhile, heat jam in a small saucepan over medium heat until reduced and thickened, about 7 minutes; let cool.

5. Sprinkle cutout cookies with confectioners' sugar. Spread jam onto uncut squares; top with cutout ones. Store in an airtight container up to 2 days.

This recipe is from the 2007 February issue of Martha Stewart Living, and they are fabulous; I just made them for the office. I made them with a few exceptions:
-instead of cherry jam, which I don't like, I used strawberry jam.
-instead of waiting for the cookies to be baked to spread the jam and assemble them, I do it before they're cooked. This makes the jam glassy and much less messy when you eat them!
-I also don't own any cookie cutters, so I used a plastic cup to cut circular cookies, and the cap of a water bottle to cut smaller holes in the center of the top piece!

No comments: