Last week, I was asked to bring in cookies for Mister Man’s Christmas program. The only requirement was that they be nut free. Easily done, since I don’t cook with nuts anyway.
I chose the recipe for my grandmother’s Raspberry Almond Thumbprint Cookies, as they’re relatively easy to make and also don’t have egg — another allergy in Mister Man’s class. I figured this way the boy would have our treat and whatever his mother brought for him.
I got out all the ingredients and quickly realized that I was out of almond extract. I sighed heavily and got my coat and purse to go buy more. Oh. Yeah. Almond extract. Made from almonds. Which are nuts. And therefore verboten.
I adjusted my dear Gram’s recipe so that they were Strawberry VANILLA Thumbprint cookies (and also dairy free for Little Miss), and they are my husband’s favorite cookies of all the batches I’ve made so far this year. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures, and they’re completely gone now. I think I’ll have to make them again soon though!
Raspberry Almond Thumbprint Cookies
2/3 c sugar
1 c butter, softened (or butter flavored Crisco if you’re going dairy free)
1/2 t almond extract (or 1 t vanilla if you’re going nut free, ahem)
2 c flour
1/2 c preserves (any flavor works but ummm not grape, please)
1 c powdered sugar
1/2 t almond extract (or 1 t vanilla)
2-3 t water
Cream the butter and sugar well. Add the almond extract/vanilla until well-combined. Add the flour and stir until just mixed.
Spoon onto a cookie sheet with a sil pat (if you don’t have one, use an UNgreased cookie sheet). Use a spoon or your thumbs to make a good indentation in the center. Bake at 350 for 14-18 minutes until they start to turn slightly golden and crack just a touch.
Use the spoon to reaffirm the dents. Spoon a bit of preserves into each divot you’ve made. Let the cookies cool with the preserves in them until they are no longer warm (if you are impatient, the glaze won’t work well, not that I know this from experience).
Mix together the powdered sugar and vanilla/almond extract. Slowly dribble in water until the glaze has reached the consistency you like. I go a little thicker but still pourable. Spoon just enough glaze onto each cookie to cover the jam, but don’t let it spill over the edges.
Let cookies harden 10-15 minutes before eating… if you can!