You may know these as “thumbprint cookies,” but I’ve known them as “Scandinavian cookies” for over 50 years. My high-school BFF’s mother made them, and that’s what she called them. My hubby and boys called them delicious, and I could never keep enough of them. We always made them with seedless black raspberry jam, but you may use any tart jam that suits your fancy. I find that adding lemon zest and juice to the jam really brightens it up, so that’s just a tiny tweak I’ve made to this great recipe.
This is an old family favorite that absolutely must appear on our Christmas cookie tray. Velvety smooth shortbread cookies with caramel undertones are encased in toasted walnuts and filled with a bright, tart jam. I’ve already tripled the recipe for you because they’re that good.
|Scandinavian Cookies |
Slightly adapted from Edith Hutchins
Rating: 10 out of 10
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1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, soft*
1/4 tsp. Diamond kosher salt*
3/4 cup light brown sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature, separated
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
about 3 cups finely ground walnuts
About 1/2 cup tart jam (seedless boysenberry, or seedless black raspberry)
1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
*If you use salted butter, then omit the 1/4 tsp. salt.
In work bowl of food processor, pulse butter, salt and sugar till smooth and well combined. Add egg yolks and pulse till yellow disappears. Add flour in 3 batches, pulsing till mixture comes together in a soft dough. Chill dough about 1 hour, or up to overnight, for easier handling.
When ready to bake, set egg whites out for about one hour to bring them to room temperature. (It’s near impossible to whisk a cold egg white.) Heat oven to 350F. Line cookie sheets with parchment. Place nuts in small bowl. Stir jam, lemon zest and juice together; spoon into resealable sandwich bag; snip a tiny piece off the corner. Whisk egg whites with 1/4 cup warm water in small bowl.
Using about 1 Tbsp. dough each, roll into walnut-sized balls.
Dip balls of dough into egg whites, then roll in nuts. (Two forks work well instead of fingers.)
Place balls on cookie sheets. Depress each ball in center (I use the back of a citrus peeler).
Fill cavities with some jam, but don’t overfill or the jam will bubble over the tops of the cookie –that looks unappetizing.
Bake 12-15 minutes or till cookies are set. Transfer to wire racks to cool. While cookies are cooling, refill each cavity with jam. (Cookies will be larger now, and you can put more jam in.)
You’ll get about 4 dozen cookies from this recipe, and, trust me, it won’t be enough!
Today’s post is for week 10 of 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats, hosted by Brenda Thompson. Her blog is Meal Planning Magic.
Be sure and check out all of the fabulous treats the other participants came up with this week. And, if you would like to join the hop and add your own Christmas treat recipes, just contact Brenda for details.