Monday, December 21, 2009

Lemon Poppyseed Jam Sandwich Cookies

Last December for Tuesdays With Dorie, we baked Dorie Greenspan's Linzer Sable Cookies. I used a bunch of cookie cutters that I had on hand, but soon after I bought a Christmas linzer cookie cutter set. It comes with one spiffy spring assisted round scallop cutter and several small interchangeable holiday-shaped dies that lock into place to make cut-outs in the middle of the circle cookies.

When I was paging through cookbooks and magazines, planning for this year's Christmas cookie baking, I knew that I wanted to find a recipe that I could bake with my special cookie cutters - and also use up a bit of my extensive jam collection. I bookmarked a few recipes that were ground-nut-based, like last year's Linzer Sables. And one that was a plain cut out shortbread.

But then one morning, the Washington Post Food Section (@WaPoFood) sent a link to these Lemon Poppy Seed Sandwich Cookies out on Twitter, and I knew these were the jam cookies for me!

n.o.e.'s notes:

- This recipe is from pastry chef Tiffany MacIsaac, who is a major cookie afficionado, so I had high hopes that it would be delicous.

- The great thing about this kind of cookie: you can mix the dough one day then pop it in the fridge. Then roll it out in a ziploc and pop it back in the fridge for a couple of hours or a couple of days. Then you can cut and bake the cookies, and put the baked cookies in the freezer them until you are finally ready to fill, sandwich, and serve them. That's pretty much how I baked these cookies.

- Although the recipe provides a delicious-sounding cranberry filling that is made from fresh cranberries, and I have a bountiful supply of fresh cranberries in my fridge, I was determined to use some of my extensive jam holdings for these cookies. I chose raspberry jam, partly as a nod to the traditional Linzer flavor, partly because I wanted a red jam for the picture, and partly because I thought it would be good with the lemon flavor of the cookies. Plus, I already had a jar of raspberry open and in the fridge.

- Because I was in a hurry I just spead jam from the jar onto the cookies before assembling them. I have a lot of the unassembled baked cookies in the freezer, and the next time I assemble some I think that I'll cook the jam so it is thicker, as we did with the Linzer Sables last year.

the verdict:

When I tasted the dough right after I mixed it, I had doubts whether the lemon flavor was going to be noticeable in the finished cookie. I'm happy to report, however, that the cookies had a nice taste of lemon in a tender shortbread form, which paired beautifully with the raspberry filling.

I loved these delicious and unusual cookies, and can't wait to put them on the Christmas cookie platter; I'm guessing they will be a huge hit!


Jessica said...

What a great Christmas cookie! I love that they're out of the ordinary and just a touch more sophisticated than many Christmas cookies. The raspberry and lemon flavor combination sounds fabulous.

Natashya Kitchen Puppies said...

So pretty! I love lemon and raspberry together.

Jess said...

Such a great alternative use for the linzer cutters...I also have these, and could probably get some more use out of them. Love the flavor combination - they're gorgeous!

pinkstripes said...

Gorgeous cookies! Ha! Red raspberry jam for the pictures. Love it.

Kayte said...

Lemon and raspberry...YUM. I knew we should have come shopping there. Sounds like a perfect combination to me...and they look so nice, such an addition to the plate!

mike said...

These are beautiful Nancy - such elegant linzers! I have yet to use my newly bought holiday linzer set.. time is running out though. Only so many cutters, only so many days! The fruit combo is wonderful - you always come up with the most delicious, unique pairings of flavors!

Di said...

I'm envious of your holiday cutters--those are really cool. I like the candy cane. These cookies sound really yummy.

Eliana said...

These look so precious Nancy.