Linzer Heart Cookies
Named after the jam-filled linzertorte that inspired them, these beautiful heart-shaped cookies are ideal for a wedding dessert buffet, Valentine's Day, or any romantic occasion. Apricot, strawberry, or cherry jam can be substituted for the seedless raspberry jam in this recipe.
- Yield: Makes 3 dozen cookies
- 1 1/4 cups whole hazelnuts
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
- 1 cup seedless raspberry jam
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Toast hazelnuts until skins darken and begin to split, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a clean dish towel, and rub vigorously to remove skins; discard skins. Place nuts in a food processor; pulse until medium fine.
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar at medium-high speed until light and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs; beat until smooth, about 3 minutes. Beat in vanilla.
In a large bowl, combine flour, hazelnuts, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and zest. Add to butter mixture; beat to combine, about 1 minute. Place in freezer until very firm, about 30 minutes.
Liberally dust a clean surface with flour, and roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out seventy-two hearts. To make top halves of cookies, use a 1-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut out centers from thirty-six of the hearts.
Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, and bake until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack until completely cooled.
Lightly sift confectioners' sugar over cookie tops. Spread about 1 teaspoon jam on each of the bottom halves, and sandwich both halves together. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.