Merry Christmas! Although I am Jewish, I have always loved Christmas. Granted, I'm not involved with the religious aspect of the holiday; however, in America it has firmly embedded itself as an unavoidable cultural giant. Luckily, I love the snappy music, the bright sparky colors, and most of all I love holiday baking. For this post, I wanted to attempt a traditional Christmas cookie. After researching gingerbread men, chocolate crinkles, and pfeffernüsse, I finally decided on elegant an Linzer cookie.
A Linzer cookie originates from Linzer, Austria where it was traditionally a Torte. The "Linzertorte" has a buttery crust, a preserve or jam filling, and a lattice crust. It evolved into individual servings using the same butter cookie base, a dollop of of preserve or jam, and another butter cookie placed on top only with a "Linzer eye" cut out so the filling can be viewed through the hole. My favorite part of the this cookie is the thick coat of powdered sugar that covers the top cookie. The white snow dusted cookie with a peeking bite of sweet jam makes for a graceful upgrade to simple butter cookies.
1 recipe for your favorite butter cookie dough
3" cookie cutter
1" cookie cutter (I used a little heart!)
Jam or Preserves (I used seedless red raspberry)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper
2. Roll out cookie dough and cut two circles with the 3" cutter for each cookie. Cut out a center circle (or shape) out of one of the two circles with the 1" cutter; this will be the top of the Linzer cookie.
3. Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes or until edges are just golden brown. Let cool completely. After cool, refrigerate for 30 minutes to ensure less breakage.
4. Place a dollop of jam or preserves on each cookie without a hole.
5. Spread out the cookies with holes out on a surface and sift a thick layer of powdered sugar over these cookies.
6. Carefully place the cookie tops on top of the cookie bottoms with jam and press down lightly so the jam or preserves may be seen through the hole.
7. Ta-Da! A beautiful Christmas Linzer cookie!
photos by: Zac Wolf Photography