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Heart Shaped Linzer Sandwich Cookies

I love everything about Valentine’s day, except one thing… all the chocolate. Not that I don’t love chocolate.  I do, and therein lies the problem. After the Halloween candy fiasco, the Thanksgiving feast of pies, and the month of Christmas treats, I look forward to January as being somewhat of a sugar detox. By the middle of February I’m on a roll, doing good with healthy eating, and then along comes big heart-shaped boxes of fine chocolate. I’m very weak, and instead of sharing or maybe rationing the delicious morsels, I conveniently forget my new good eating habits and never seem to get back on track with my diet until the middle of March when the reality of swimsuit season hits.

I much rather just make a few not so sweet treats like these almond linzer sandwich cookies with raspberry jam, or the chocolate dipped pretzels for Valentine’s Day I made yesterday. I got the idea for these cookies when I was at our local craft store yesterday. I spotted the cutest heart-shaped linzer cookie cutters. I just couldn’t pass them up. The cookie cutters are made by Wilton, and even came with an easy recipe.  I changed a few things in that recipe to get the one here. I filled them with seedless raspberry jam and sprinkled them with powdered sugar.

Ingredients

1 cup, 2 sticks, butter
1 large egg
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cups finely ground almonds
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raspberry or strawberry jam
confectioners sugar

Method

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Add flour, salt, cinnamon and ground almonds to a large bowl and mix well with a whisk.

2. Cream butter and sugar in a stand mixer. Add egg, scrap down sides and mix again until well incorporated. Add vanilla and mix. Add flour mixture and mix, scrapping down sides until flour mixture is well incorporated.

3.  Split cookie dough in half and refrigerate until well-chilled and firm. Roll out cookie dough to about 1/8 inch. At this point I freeze the dough for about 30 minutes, so it is very firm and I can cut them easier. Then cut cookies out of chilled and firm dough and transfer cookies to parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until golden brown.

4. Let cookies cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then remove and let them cool completely. After cooled, spread about 1 teaspoon jam on cookie and make a sandwich. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

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