The Foodie Blogroll

Green Tea Almond Thumbprints + Linzer Cookies

Green Tea Almond Thumbprints

Recipe adapted from here

I love almonds. I think that both anise and almonds are in an Italian's blood. If you're Italian and not a fan of either, tsk tsk to you! I'm kidding... but not really. When I see a cookie that contains either of these ingredients I usually put them into my recipe vault. Well, when I saw a recipe for thumbprint cookies and saw that one of the major ingredients in the cookie were ground almonds I knew I had to make them. I always see thumbprint cookies popping up on people's holiday recipes, however, it never is one of mine. I'm not sure why, I guess it's because my mother and grandmother never made these around the holidays, or ever for that manner so I just never think to make them. However, I do think they are really pretty so I thought I would make some.

I decided to switch up the recipe a little bit by adding some matcha to the cookie. These were an absolute hit. The whole batch was devoured by the next day. They were crisp, moist with a beautiful hint of green tea almond flavour. Then when you bit the inside your tastebuds were taken over by a sweet and seedy raspberry flavour. These are definitely one of the best cookies I have had in a long time. They were super tasty and incredibly easy to make!


Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup + a well-rounded 1/4 cup of finely ground almonds
  • 1/2 cup + 1/4 + 1/8 of a cup of all purpose flour
  • 1 stick of butter, at room temp.
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 tsp of almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 tsp matcha powder
  • About 1/2-1 cup raspberry jam
  • Confectioners sugar for dusting
Directions:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the ground almonds, matcha powder and flour. Set aside.
In a separate larger bowl, beat the butter and sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add both extracts and beat to blend. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the nut-flour mixture, mixing only until it is incorporated into the dough. Cover and refrigerate for about 20-30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set them aside.

Working with a well-rounded teaspoonful of dough at a time, roll the dough into balls and place them about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Steadying each cookie with your fingers, use the end of a wooden spoon to poke a hole in the center of each cookie. Be careful not to go all the way down to the baking sheet.

Bake for 13-16 minutes. The cookies should only be slightly browned. They may look underdone, which is fine. You don't want to overbake them. When the cookies are baked, remove the baking sheets from the oven and let the cookies rest on their sheets for 2 minutes before transferring them to cooling racks. If the holes have puffed up during baking, gently push them in again with the end of a wooden spoon (be sure to do this while they are still warm.) Place the cooling racks over a sheet of paper towel or parchment paper and sift some confectioners sugar over all the cookies.

Filling:

In a small saucepan, bring the jam to just a boil over low heat. You can also do this in the microwave. Fill the holes of all the cookies with enough of the hot jam to come to level with the tops. Cool to room temperature.

Yields 25-30 cookies

Linzer Cookies

Recipe taken from here

The next cookie I decided to try out was a cookie that I have seen over and over again but had never had before. This was very similar to the Green Tea Almond Thumbprints, I mean it pretty much was the same recipe in all respects just without the matcha powder.

Did I like these cookies? Yeah, they were good, but the Green Tea Thumbprint cookies blew these cookies out of the water. I love green tea and with the mix of almond it just made the cookies spectacular. If I hadn't of just made the above cookies I would of probably gobbled these cookies up, but it just wasn't the same. So, if you're a huge fan of almonds but not green tea try these!

Ingredients:
  • 1 1/2 cup ground almonds and/or hazelnuts
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp water
  • 1 stick butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup raspberry jam
  • 2 tsp water
  • Powdered sugar for dusting
Directions:

Sift together ground nuts (to grind, pulse in food processor), flour, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Stir to combine. In a separate bowl whisk egg with 2 tsp water.

Beat softened butter with 1/2 c. sugar until smooth. Add egg and water mixture and beat for another minute. Add dry ingredients to wet and stir gently. Do not overwork the dough once you have added the dry ingredients as it will toughen the dough. When the dough comes together in your hands, take half of the dough and form it into a ball. Flatten into a disk and place between two sheets of wax paper. Roll out to a 1/4 inch thickness. Repeat with remaining dough. Place dough sheets on top of a baking sheet and freeze for 30 minutes, or refrigerate for 2 hours, until dough is firm.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Use a round cookie cutter to cut circles from the chilled dough. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Use a smaller round cookie cutter to cut circles out of the centers of half of the cookies; these will form the tops. Bake cookies for 12 minutes. Re-roll any dough scraps and chill quickly in the freezer while first batch of cookies bakes. When first batch is done, remove from oven and place on racks to cool to room temperature. Cut out cookies from remaining dough and bake.

In a small saucepan, bring jam and 2 tsp water to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Once boiling, remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature.

Dust top cookie halves with powdered sugar. Line bottom cookie halves up and place a small spoonful of jam on each one. Sandwich the jam by placing a top cookie half over the jam.

Enjoy, these are perfect for the holidays! :)

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