Traditionally made for Christmas and other holidays, these Linzer cookies are soft but crumbly, sandwiched together with homemade raspberry jam.
What are Linzer Cookies?
Here goes the story… Linzer cookies are named after Linzer torte, which originated in a small city of Linz, Austria . Yes, that's in Europe. We're nearly neighbours. Nearly. 😀
The torte is believed to have been created in 17th century, while the cookie adaptation came in 19th century. It's said that Linzertorte is the first cake in the world. At least according to Wikipedia and several other online resources. To quote Michael Scott: "Wikipedia is the best thing ever. Anyone in the world can write anything they want about any subject. So you know you are getting the best possible information." I laughed so hard. Good one, mr. Scarn.
But yeah, I hope that's true about Linzertorte.
Linzertorte was more of a pie, than a cake –coming from today's point of view. The main ingredients for making beautiful, crumbly pastry are flour, butter, some kind of nut (almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts usually), egg yolk, some citrus zest and spices like cinnamon. After that, the only thing you need is to bake it, spread it with loads of delicious jam and cover with pastry lattice. Yum!
Basically, Linzer cookies are a bitesize version of Linzertorte which are adored all over the world.
For me, traditional Linzer cookies are made with almonds. But you can use any nut you want.
WHAT MAKES THESE THE BEST LINZER COOKIES YOU'LL EVER EAT?
Christmas is the time of giving and sharing. "For it is in giving that we recieve.", said Francis of Assisi. So, in that spirit, I'll share my secret with you. To get THE BEST possible flavour in your Linzer Cookies, you need to toast the almonds! 🙂 Generally speaking, when working with nuts you always want to toast them because that deepens their flavour and aroma. In other words, it makes them extremely delicious! 😉
And to bring more of a home feel to it, I made a quick jam, as well. It's really super simple and you don't need to make a lot of it, just enough for the cookies. Normally, you should use equal amounts of fruit and sugar when making jam. So that's what I did here. Honestly, when trying it with a spoon it was a little sweet, but sandwiched between cookies it was absolutely fantastic!
I hope you'll make these a part of your Christmas table, I'm postive that everyone would love them! Happy holidays x
ARE YOU LOOKING FOR MORE DELICIOUS COOKIE RECIPES?
Linzer Cookies with homemade Raspberry Jam
- 250 g all-purpose flour
- 100 g ground almonds toasted
- 200 g unsalted butter room temperature
- 115 g granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 500 g frozen raspberries
- 500 g granulated sugar
- juice and zest of one lemon
- Preheat your oven to 175˚C or 350˚F. Line your baking sheet with baking paper.
- Toast ground almonds until golden brown. You can use whole almonds as well, just blitz them afterwards until finely ground. Set them aside to cool a little bit.
- In a medium sized bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Add toasted ground almonds once they're cool.
- In another bowl, using a hand or a stand mixer, mix together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy (approx. 2-3 min)
- Add an egg and vanilla extract and mix until everything is combined.
- Add your dry ingredients to butter, sugar and egg mixture in TWO batches, mixing just until everything is incorporated and there are no lumps of flour. You don't want to overmix it, otherwise your cookies will get tough.
- Divide it in two, wrap up in cling film forming a disc and put it in fridge for an hour or up to a week.
- Once you're ready to bake the cookies, leave the dough at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes, until it's ready to roll.
- On a floured surface roll out the dough to a 1/4 inch thick circle and cut out 2 inch wide circles. There should be 28-30 cookies. Using a smaller cookie cutter cut out the middle in half of your cookie circles. I used a small star cookie cutter but you can use whatever you want, even a round nozzle! 🙂
- Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes. They should be lightly soft in the middle and golden. Transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Quick Raspberry Jam:
- In a medium sized non-stick saucepan place together frozen raspberries, sugar and lemon juice and zest. Cook it on a medium-high heat until it starts to boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and let it cook for 15-20 minutes until it thickens. Once it's done, strain the jam through a sieve to get rid of raspberry seeds and put it a clean glass jar. Let it cool in the fridge before using.
- Dust half of your cookies (the ones without the middle) with powdered sugar. Put a teaspoon of jam in the middle of each cookie but be careful not to spread it all the way to the end, so it doesn't ooze out when you sandwich the cookies. Place the other cookie on top and treat yo self!
- Not all ovens are the same. I suggest baking a couple of "test cookies" to find out the best baking time or temperature. Get to know your oven!
- If you still don't own one, I advise you to buy a kitchen scale - they're cheap and easy to use, and always guarantee the same results in baking!