Monday, December 10, 2012

The 12 Posts of Christmas (2012), volume III

I went to Costco over the weekend and bought the Costco-size butter, both salted and unsalted.  It's Christmastime and that means cookies.  The only question is what to make?

I'm know if Mrs. BA makes them they will be perfect.

Here's the solution.  The Christmas Cookie A Day Advent Calendar.  Here's my favorite recipe from the first ten days.  It happens to be the first cookie (December 1).

Linzer Stars

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 1 1/3 cups slivered almonds 
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon 
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt 
  • 2/3 cup sugar 
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature 
  • 1 large egg 
  • 2 teaspoons dark rum 
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam 
  • Powdered sugar (for dusting)
Special equipment
  • a 2-inch star cookie cutter
  • a 1/2-inch star cookie cutter 
Pulse flour, almonds, cinnamon, and salt in a food processor until almonds are finely ground (no larger than poppy seeds).

Using an electric mixer at medium speed, beat sugar and butter in a large bowl until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg; beat until well blended, about 1 minute. Beat in rum and vanilla. Reduce speed to low; add dry ingredients. Beat dough just to blend; gently knead if necessary to form a ball.

Divide dough in half. Place each half between sheets of parchment or waxed paper. Working with 1 piece at a time, flatten dough into a disk; roll dough, occasionally lifting paper on both sides for easier rolling, until 1/8 inches thick. Chill dough in paper until very firm, at least 2 hours. DO AHEAD: Dough can be made 2 days ahead. Cover; keep chilled.

Arrange a rack in middle of oven and preheat to 375°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

Working with 1 dough disk at a time, remove top sheet of paper and, using 2-inch star cookie cutter, cut out cookies. Transfer to baking sheets, placing 1/2 inch apart; chill. Repeat with remaining dough. Gather scraps; repeat rolling, chilling, and cutting until dough is used.

Using 1/2-inch star cookie cutter, cut out a star from the center of half the cookies. Working in batches, bake cookies until light golden brown, dry, and just firm to the touch, 11-13 minutes. (Cookies will firm up as they cool.) Transfer to a wire rack; let cool. DO AHEAD: Cookies can be baked 2 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Bring jam and 1 teaspoon water to a boil in a small saucepan; let cool slightly.

Arrange whole cookies flat side up. Spoon 1 teaspoon cooled jam in the center of each, dabbing slightly to spread. Arrange cookies with cutouts flat side down on a wire rack; dust with powdered sugar. Set atop whole cookies, lining up star points and allowing jam to push up slightly through center. DO AHEAD: Linzer Stars can be assembled 8 hours ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Nutritional Information
20 servings, 1 sandwich cookie per serving, 1 serving contains
  • Calories (kcal) 150 
  • Fat (g) 8 
  • Saturated Fat (g) 3 
  • Cholesterol (mg) 25 
  • Carbohydrates (g) 18 
  • Dietary Fiber (g) 1 
  • Total Sugars (g) 10 
  • Protein (g) 3 
  • Sodium (mg) 50 

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