Sunday, June 6, 2010
Sweet Melissa Sundays: Pistachio Linzer Thumbprints
I'm very excited about June cookie month for Sweet Melissa Sundays. This is the first of 4 weeks of cookie recipes coming up. Linzers are a favorite of mine. I make linzers every Christmas and package them up with a few other varieties of cookies and give them as gifts. They are delicate sandwich cookies and have that wow factor that makes them special. I fill them with raspberry and lemon curd and the lemon curd is the by and large the favorite (somewhat reminiscent of a lemon bar). I thought Melissa Murphy's Pistachio Linzer Thumbprints would go well with lemon curd filling. Thumbs up on these tasty cookies!
The pistachios give these cookies a crumbly texture, but the flavor of the nuts was very subtle. Upon reading other SMS baker's experience with crumbly dough, I used 3/4 cup of pistachios rather than 1 cup. The dough came together in the food processor and looked like rough cornmeal. I was concerned that the dough would not come together. But when I pinched it together it held. I think because the recipe calls for cold butter it gets that dry looking texture. I formed my dough into a large disc and let it sit out at room temperature for about 15 minutes to ensure the butter the was warm enough to keep the dough nice and doughy! I then refrigerated it for about an hour before rolling it out into balls.
The little balls of dough got a coating of egg wash and a tumble in the finely chopped pistachios. I did add about 1/4 cup of sugar to the pistachios when I pulsed them in the food processor to keep the oil in the nuts from making the coating too moist--a trick from my linzer recipe.
When I pressed in the thumbprints there was a slight cracking at the edges but it was easily solved by just patting them together. The warmth from your fingers makes the butter soften right up and hold a nice shape.
I filled a ziploc bag with store bought lemon curd (I like Dickinson's brand) and piped the filling in the centers.
20 minutes in the oven and they came out golden brown.
A heavy shower of powdered sugar went on after the cookies cooled. The coolest tip from this recipe was tapping the center of the cookie with a wet finger to get the lemon curd to shine through the powdered sugar. It's these little genius things that make all the difference in the world.
So how did they taste? I really enjoyed them. It was nice to try baking with a different kind of nut. They have a crumbly texture, but not too crumbly. The sweetness from the powdered sugar is perfect with the sweet curd filling. Hubby said they were good, but not great. But, he did come back for seconds. Which speaks volumes for him! He's not a big sweets guy. I would definitely make these again. Even though this recipe has a few steps, I thought it was easier than my regular linzer recipe. Melissa Murphy also recommends trying this recipe with hazelnuts. Hazelnuts would be tasty with Nutella filling! Mmmmmm. So many options!
Thank you Tracey for hosting this week's recipe. Check out what other SMS bakers did here. Up next week, Chocolate Orange Macaroons. :)