Almond Thumbprint Cookies

These melt-in-your-mouth cookies are the epitome of holiday indulgence. Buttery, nutty, with smooth preserves and chewy texture, they have it all.

Let me start off by saying that I do not bake cookies – I’m just not a cookie person, not to mention the caloric havoc they wreak. So when undertaking this task, for the sake of kindling some holiday spirit, I made a booboo on the first batch.

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oversized cookies

I underestimated how much these suckers expand and made them waaaay too big, you can see the result above. Sticky, misshapen mess that…still tastes good! But the points are lost completely on presentation.

The second batch, which was properly sized, came out just a tiny bit flat. This is because I use half regular flour and half almond flour in this recipe. I prefer it this way because the almond flour gives the cookies a nutty flavor and crumbly texture. It also doesn’t rise the same way regular flour does, so the cookies end up being slightly flatter than those you would have otherwise. Not a problem for me, just a disclaimer to the less wise (non-cookie bakers like me).

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Another disclaimer – these traditionally use raspberry and peach preserves. I live in a Russian household where the only preserves recognized as official are black currant preserves, so that’s what I used. For the lighter ones, I used mango preserves I had previously purchased for my mango-obsessed significant other. Moral of the story – use whatever preserves your heart desires, just make sure they are on the smooth, thick side.

All in all, these are amazingly delicious and I plan on feeding them to all of my friends. A very nice holiday treat!

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Almond Thumbprint Cookies

This recipe will make approximately 30 cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened at room temperature to a pliable texture
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar, plus more for finishing (optional)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup black currant preserves
  • 1/4 cup mango preserves

Method

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Use a stand mixer, if you don’t have one (like myself) use a hand mixer. Combine the sugar and the butter and beat on medium until well incorporated. Add the vanilla and the salt, then the almond flour. Beat until smooth, then add the all purpose flour.
  3. The mixture will get pretty thick, so you can stop the mixer and continue to incorporate everything together with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula. Once everything is well-combined, gather the dough up in the bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or use a Silpat. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and start forming 1-inch round balls. Place them about an inch apart on the baking sheet – a standard size baking sheet should fit about 15 cookies. Once you’re done placing the balls, use your pointer finger (yes, it actually works better than your thumb) and press wells into the center of each cookie. Take your preserves and fill the cookies with them level with the top of the well.
  5. Bake for about 15-20 minutes (depending on your oven) on the middle rack. Check on them after 15 minutes – if the edges are golden brown, the cookies are done.
  6. Take them out of the oven and let them cool down for about 10 minutes, after which you can easily remove them to a plate or plastic container. Dust them with more powdered sugar for presentation purposes (they really don’t need it, but we are being festive here). Enjoy!
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