With their wintry spices and deep red centers, these cookies are perfect for the holidays. Their name refers to the Austrian city in which they originated in the 17th century. “The dough is very fragile when even slightly warm,” explains Jonas Laughlin, owner of Laughlin’s Bakery in Columbus, “so I keep it cold at all times after I’ve rolled it out. If the cookies start to break, just briefly pop the dough back in the fridge to firm it up.”
Linzer Cookies | Makes 40 cookies
A prefabricated Linzer cookie cutter with a removable middle cutter is recommended for this recipe.
255 grams all-purpose flour
60 grams dried breadcrumbs
170 grams almonds, ground
130 grams sugar
3 grams salt
3 grams cinnamon
.4 grams nutmeg, freshly ground
.4 grams allspice
8 grams lemon zest, finely chopped
226 grams butter, very soft (approximately 70 F)
50 grams eggs
200 grams powdered sugar
185 grams raspberry preserves
92 grams strawberry preserves
5 grams lemon juice
Add flour, breadcrumbs, ground almonds, sugar, spices, salt and lemon zest to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low to combine.
Add soft butter and continue mixing on low until combined. Add egg and continue mixing on low until the egg is incorporated and just until a cohesive dough forms.
Transfer dough to a piece of parchment paper and knead quickly into a ball. Divide in half and roll each of the two dough pieces between 2 parchment sheets until the dough is in a slab 3/8-inch thick.
Refrigerate the two dough slabs on a baking sheet until firm. (Requires at least 1 hour before baking, but prepare a day before for best results.) Line baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350 F.
From the first dough slab, cut out cookie bottoms with a fluted round cutter, 1 3/4 to 2 inches in diameter.
From the second dough slab, cut out cookie tops with a fluted round cutter the same size with an excavated center.
Bake for 9 minutes (two pans at a time, rotating pans top to bottom and front to back halfway through the baking).
While tops are still warm, dust generously with powdered sugar. Allow bottoms to cool.
While cookies are cooling, mix filling ingredients in a medium bowl. Spoon or pipe a generous dollop of filling onto the cooled cookie bottoms. Carefully add the tops to form a sandwich cookie. Cover and allow to sit a day before serving.