Hazelnut Linzers for Christmas

From the archives of historical cookbooks, a recipe on a traditional Linzer torte lies within its’ fragile pages, clearly documenting the oldest tart in the world. This old tart or ‘cake’ dates back to the mid 1600’s. A Linzer torte is a traditional Austrian dish with a crumbly buttery almond pastry base filled with a redcurrant or raspberry jam, covered with a beautiful pastry lattice top. Rather than baking a whole pie, here’s a wonderful recipe derived from the original dish – basically all the ingredients needed for a Linzer torte, yet it is a single serving, hence you can have more than one… because it’s Christmas!!!

Use stars, angels, snowflake cutters, crimped cutters or whatever your heart desires to put your own artistic flair on these cookies. Have fun, go crazy and make sure you taste along the way!!

The cookie version of a traditional mid 17th Century Austrian torte…

The cookie version of a traditional mid 17th Century Austrian torte…

THE RECIPE

Makes about 36 x 20g cookies = 18 full cookies

Bake in oven for 12 – 14 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius fan forced

110g ground hazelnuts (you can also use almonds)

300g (2 cups) plain flour

½ tsp cinnamon powder

225g unsalted butter

135g caster sugar

(4g) 1 tsp vanilla

a pinch of salt

2 egg yolks

½ cup jam (I used my homemade strawberry lime jam but you can use whatever you want!)

icing sugar

1. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy

2. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until combined

3. Add the hazelnuts and then sifted flour. Mix until all the ingredients are combined to form a lovely dough.

4. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate the mixture until firm (40mins)

5. Roll out and cut with a round cookie cutter (6cm diameter) and poke every other one with the apple corer to make a small hole or you can use a small shape cutter.

6. Bake in the oven for 12-14 minutes

7. Take out and cool then transfer to a cooling rack to completely cool the cookies. Sprinkle icing sugar generously on the cookies with wholes

8. Spread jam on the backside of the full halves

9. Sandwich together to set

NOTES: Cook the cookies with the hole in them for a little less time. You might want to rotate the trays around to ensure the cookies are nice and evenly brown.