Saturday, December 11, 2010

Butter and Jam Thumbprint Cookies

Christmas cookie season is in full swing!  This week I made three different cookies, all of which I will share on this here blog.  First up, some jam thumbprint cookies that I found on the Food Network's website.  They are basically a sugar cookie with any flavor of jam in the middle.  I used strawberry this first go-round, and in the future I think I might try raspberry, apricot, or even lemon. I think I will be adding these to my yearly cookie making list because they are great!  The sugar coating on the outside and jam in the middle makes them mighty sweet, so have a big ol' glass of milk handy!   Here we go....

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
2/3 cup sugar, plus more for rolling
1 large egg
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped from pod, or 1/8 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup raspberry, cherry or strawberry jam

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.
Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl.

In another bowl, whip the butter and the sugar with a hand-held mixer until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla until just combined. Slowly beat in the dry ingredients in 2 additions, mixing just until incorporated.

Scoop the dough into 1-inch balls with a cookie or ice cream scoop and roll in sugar. Place about 2-inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Press a thumbprint into the center of each ball, about 1/2-inch deep. Fill each indentation with about 3/4 teaspoon jam.

Bake cookies until the edges are golden, about 15 minutes. (For even color, rotate the pans from top to bottom about halfway through baking.) Cool cookies on the baking sheets. Serve.
Store cookies in a tightly sealed container for up to 5 days.

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