Monday, December 14, 2009

12 days of Christmas cookies Day 8: Thumbprint Cookies

I was a bit of a slacker over the weekend when it came down to blog posting, Christmas Shopping, Futon building (then taking apart because there was a broken piece, hauling it back to Ikea and building yet another, more complicated better one) took my WHOLE weekend up.

But have no fear (LOL) I’ve got more cookie recipes coming up for the last couple of days here.

Thumbprint cookies:

1 cup finely chopped almonds
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
3/4 cup powdered sugar, plus
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/8 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
jam or fruit preserves

Lightly toast then cool nuts; chop until very fine and set aside ~ If using a food processor for chopping, allow nuts to cool very thoroughly before chopping them in order to avoid turning them into a paste.

Cream butter and sugar for 3-4 minutes in a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment until extra light-colored and fluffy; stir in vanilla.

Whisk together dry ingredients; add gradually to butter mixture, stirring just until (do not overmix) dough comes together; stir in chopped nuts.

Chill dough if it seems too soft.

Form dough into 1 1/4" balls and place onto parchment-lined or ungreased baking sheets; indent the top of each ball of dough with your fingertip or with the dampened end of a wooden spoon.
Bake at 325° for 10-12 minutes or just until the cookies start to turn light golden-brown at the edges; remove from oven and sprinkle lightly with powdered sugar; fill each indentation with a bit of jam or fruit preserves ~ I like to use red raspberry preserves.

NOTES: Yield becomes 60 cookies when dough is formed into 1" dough balls. And any type of toasted and chopped nuts may be substituted for the almonds.