These are such classic, simple, joyful cookies. You can cut the centers out for little jammy windows, or make small circles, any shape, and use those. We dusted the tops of the stained glass ones with powdered sugar, but we also saved the sweet little cut outs, sandwiched those and dipped in melted chocolate. Choose your own cookie finish.
The cookies remain soft to the bite, while firmly holding their shape too. And these are generously versatile. We used apricot and raspberry jam, but any would work. These could have black currant jam or marmalade and they'd be delicious. You just want to make sure the jam filling is not super chunky or too thick otherwise the top lid will slip slide about. For the optional chocolate coating we used dark, but if you prefer milk or white or a combination, please use that. We added a dash of cinnamon and both orange and lemon zest to the dough for a delicate bit of extra flavor; however, you could add a hint of cardamon, ginger, really, whatever feels delicious for you.
3 cups (375 g) all-purpose flour
1 cup (112g) almond flour
1.5 cups (340g) softened butter (I use always salted, if you don't just add 1/4tsp more to the dough, or a 1/2 tsp salt in total)
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
1 cup (200g) sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional, or other complimentary spice)
1 tbsp orange zest (optional)
1 tbsp lemon zest(optional)
3/4-1cup cup (255g-300g) jam*
optional 3/4 cup chocolate of choice melted
optional dusting of powdered sugar
*In truth I do not measure our jam. We had one jar of apricot, we love crofters all fruit jams, and one of their raspberry, we used maybe 1/4-1/3 of each jar. You also could sandwich this dough with chocolate hazelnut spread (I'd still add the cinnamon and citrus zest here, and just forgo the chocolate dipping as it might be too much)
In the bowl of a stand up mixer, cream the softened butter and sugar with the paddle attachment until mixed thoroughly.
Add in the egg and egg yolk, the zests, if you are using any, spice, vanilla and almond extract, and salt, until mixed well.
Gradually add in the flour and almond flour, until you have a dough, be cautious to not over mix, this should just take a few moments to form a soft, uniform dough.
Divide the dough into two equal parts. I just estimate, you'll roll and cut them out anyways. Shape the sections into somewhat evenly flattened disks for ease later when rolling. Wrap them in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
Roll the dough into about 1/8-inch thickness, and use whatever cut out shape you'd like. You can use a small glass upside down and simply make circle sandwich cookies, being mindful not to press down too hard as its glass, or we used hearts here. You can use one smaller cut out for the center, if making those, or you can dot the top halves with a straw, to have a top stained glass look with several small circle cut outs. Really, this part can be as kitschy and cute, as fiddly, or as simple as you like.
Preheat your oven to 350 F, and you'll bake these cookies for anywhere from 10-12 minutes. This may be the most complicated part. You want to watch until they are cooked through, and the edges are just beginning to golden, but the tops should not be browned or they'll be too crisp. As each oven has a slightly different temperature, altitude, not to mention we'll all be baking different shapes and sized cookies, around 10 min just check in with your cookies, and go from there until done.
These are a bit soft first out of the oven, so do cool them on the baking try for about 2-5 min before using your spatula to transfer them to a cooling rack.
You can take the top half to a separate area, I usually line a counter with parchment paper just for clean up ease, and then dust the top parts with powdered sugar, if doing that. Then add about 1-2tsp (entirely depending on the size of your cookie) of jam to the bottom of halves, and sandwich together. If you're dipping in chocolate instead, do that then place on parchment paper for the chocolate to set.
These make such a sweet treat for tea time, a lunch snack, gifts for neighbors, or just to have as a nibble about the house. Happy baking and memory making sweet people.
poem by Joy Harjo