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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

Five ingredients.  That's all you need.  Butter, sugar, flour, extract and jam.

And I'm going to guess that these are ingredients that you already have in your pantry!

What are you waiting for?

Today's Playlist

  • "Short Skirt/Long Jacket"...Cake
  • "Come Out and Play"...The Offspring
  • "Flagpole Sitta"...Harvey Danger
  • "Snow (Hey Oh)"...Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • "Funky But Chic"...New York Dolls
  • "Sixteen Saltines"...Jack White
  • "Perfect Situation"...Weezer
  • "No One Knows"...Queens of the Stone Age

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies (makes 18 large or 36 small cookies)
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter 
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon almond extract (you may substitute vanilla extract)
  • 2 cups flour
  • your favorite jam, approximately 1/3 cup, for filling

Gather your ingredients.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Beat the butter, sugar and extract in the bowl of your mixer until well combined.

Notes: Using cold butter will save time in the long run--you won't need to chill the dough.  However, if you do not have a heavy-duty mixer that's powerful enough to mix the cold butter, use softened butter.  

Beat in the flour.  Start at a low speed, increasing the speed as the flour incorporates.

The dough will start to resemble coarse crumbs and you may start to think that it will never hold together.

Don't give up yet.  It will soon become smooth and firm.

Note: if you opted to use soft or room-temperature butter for mixing with ease, you will need to chill your dough before continuing.  Chill dough for about an hour until it is firm and holds its shape.

Shape the dough into balls (or use a cookie scoop) and place on an ungreased baking pan (or line your pan with parchment).  Leave at least 2" of space between cookies.  I made 18 very large cookies (about 2 tablespoons each).  Depending upon the size of your cookies, you should end up with 18 to 36 cookies.

Make an indentation in the center of each cookie.  You can do this the traditional way, with your thumb, or use the back of a measuring spoon (I used a teaspoon, but if you're baking smaller cookies 1/2 teaspoon would be fine).

You may find that the dough is a bit dry and it may crack when you make the indentation.  Gently but firmly apply pressure and squish those cracks together!

Like this.

Drop a teaspoon of jam into each indentation.  You don't want to overfill!  Keep the jam level just below the top of the cookie rim.  If it's above the rim it will overflow while it bakes and you'll end up with little cookie volcanoes stuck to your pan!

Bake in your preheated 350-degree oven for 10-12 minutes for small cookies or 12-15 minutes for large cookies, or until cookies are barely starting to turn brown around the edges.

Allow the cookies to cool for 2 or 3 minutes before removing them from the pan.  The jam will be very HOT and runny.  Transfer the cookies (with care!) onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

I filled half the cookies peach amaretto jam--my favorite!!

I filled the rest with seedless raspberry jam--my other favorite!!


1 comment:

  1. Why yes Fran, I do have these ingredients! :) Gosh these look so good I imagine I can taste them.

    Hope all is okay for you with the snow melt, and that you'll be enjoying spring soon. Where have you been hiding Gus & Clyde?


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