Pecan Linzer Cookies with Cherry Filling

Crumbly, nutty cookies layered with sweet cherry jam and dusted with sugar make delectable valentines. If you're feeling soft-hearted, serve these alongside Hot Chocolate with Marshmallow Hearts.

Pecan Linzer Cookies with Cherry Filling

Source: Martha Stewart Living, February 2007

Ingredients

  • 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

Directions

  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.

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