Today is my sister in law Saunna's birthday, she gave birth to my beautiful niece Alana few weeks back.
All I gotta say is - Saunna these cookies are for you....its my way of saying that you are a Rock-STAR......and you are gonna be one hell of a mom.
Love you and wish you a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
Do check out Saunna's Blog, she is an amazing writer .
Recipe Source:Willaims- Sonoma
- 1 cup Almonds(blanched,skinned and toasted-refer notes)
- 1/2 cup (125g) unsalted Butter,at room temperature
- 1/2 cup (125g) Castor sugar
- 1 large Egg yolk
- 1 tsp Orange or Lemon zest (optional)
- 3/4 tsp Vanilla essence
- 1 cup (155g) All purpose flour
- 1/2tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4tsp Salt
- 1/4cup Jam
- Icing sugar for dusting
- Finely grind toasted almonds in a blender using short pulse (processing the nuts for no longer than 5 to 10 seconds at a time).Set this aside.
- In a large bowl cream butter on high speed until pale yellow and fluffy.Add castor sugar and continue beating until well combined. Now add vanilla essence, egg yolk, orange zest and beat on low speed until well combined.
- Sift flour, cinnamon and salt in another bowl. Add ground almonds and mix well. Add to the butter mixture and mix on low speed or stir with a spatula until well combined.the dough should be soft. Divide the dough to 4 equal parts ,wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour or in the freezer for 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 180 degree, line baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove one portion of the dough from the refrigerator ,place it between two sheets of baking paper , and roll out to 1/4 inch thick.Using a cookie cutter,cut out the cookies.Cut a hole (or any desired shape) in the center of half of the cookies using a smaller cookie cutter.Repeat to roll out all the dough.if the dough becomes sticky.wrap it and chill in freezer for 10 minutes.
- Using a spatula, transfer the cookies to the baking tray.Bake until firm to touch, about 12 minutes.Transfer the baking tray onto a wire rack.Loosen the cookies from the pan,let it remain in place until it cools down completely.
- To assemble, spread the complete solid cookies with a thin layer of 1 tsp jam. Dust the cutout cookies with icing sugar.Top the solid cookies with the cutout cookies.
How to blanch and toast almonds.
Place the almonds in a bowl and pour hot boiling water on them.Let it stand for a minute. Drain the water,remove the skin and wipe extra moisture using a paper towel. Place the almonds on a baking sheet and toast the almonds in a preheated oven at 160 degree C for 10 minutes. Keep moving the almonds around the baking tray every two minutes to avoid burning.Do not let the almonds brown.