This week’s TWD recipe is very special. For the first. time. ever.in Cake or Death history, I had my mom baking with me! Or more accurately, I baked with her, since we were in her kitchen using her ingredients. (Thanks, Mom! Sorry for spilling that ganache on the floor. And for dirtying so many dishes and countertops. And for dropping that rubber band in the oven and melting it to the oven floor. Love you!)
We had a great time making the Linzer Sables together. We made the dough a day in advance, and aside from some massive frustration involving her poorly designed, eternally frustrating food processor, it all went smoothly. (I have added her food processor to my list of Inanimate Arch Nemeses. It’s a big list.) We used toasted almonds for the nut meal, and the dough had a nice nutty flavor. I loved the addition of the spices, although it kept tricking my nose into thinking we were making gingerbread. My taste buds, however, could not be fooled.
The next day, we started cutting our shapes. I have a big collection of miniature “fondant” cutters from Wilton, that I rarely use for fondant but often use for cookies and chocolate decorations. The cookies ranged in size from under 2″ to slightly over, and we also made some minis, so we ended up with a healthy number of cookies in the end. I think my dough was rolled a little thick–I thought the resulting cookies could have been thinner, and baked a little less, so the filling-to-cookie ratio was a little higher.
We used several different fillings: strawberry jam, raspberry jam, chocolate-caramel ganache, and Nutella. I was expecting the chocolate-based cookies to be the most popular, but the jam versions were actually the winners around my house! Who’da thunk it? There was something about the pairing of fruity filling and nutty cookie that worked beautifully.
So yes, the cookies were tasty, and I would definitely make them again. They looked beautiful, especially those filled with the jewel-toned strawberry jam. With seasonal cookie shapes, they’d be perfect for a Christmas or Valentine’s Day gift plate.
You may be saying to yourself, those cookies sound awesome. What is their secret? Is it special equipment? Premium ingredients? Innate pastry skills that are impossible to duplicate? Well, it might be those things, but truly, the secret to our baking success is love.
…No, just kidding. The secret is saliva! Eat up, fools!