Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Holiday Treats

I love cake.  And cookies.  And candy.  This is in direct contradiction to achieving optimal health.  But.  I really like sugar.  I have left it behind these past couple of weeks because of this cleanse I'm almost done with, and I'm not sure absence has made my heart grow fonder.  I'm really looking forward to not loving sugar so much, as it really does nothing good for you.  ANYWAY.  I bake over the holidays, always have, always will.  Now, however, there is a bunch of great product out there that make holiday treats a little less devastating.  Take these Linzer Cookies.  I used the recipe from Elana's Pantry.  She has great sourcing information and the nice thing about this recipe is that it is ridiculously easy, with only 6 ingredients,  and it looks like I'm some kind of pastry whiz.  I have a couple more tricks up my sleeve this week and I'll be sure to share them with you as I turn them out. 

Linzer Hearts
2 ½ cups blanched almond flour
½ teaspoon celtic sea salt
½ cup grapeseed oil
¼ cup agave nectar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup raspberry jam
  1. In a large bowl, combine almond flour and salt
  2. In a smaller bowl, combine grapeseed oil, agave and vanilla
  3. Stir wet ingredients into dry
  4. Chill dough in freezer for 30 minutes
  5. Between 2 pieces of parchment paper, roll out dough 1/4 to 1/8 inch thick
  6. Use a cookie cutter to cut out 2 shapes of the same size--I used a linzer cutting set
  7. Take a smaller same shape cookie cutter to cut out the center of one of the hearts
  8. Press your thumb into the solid heart to make an indentation, then fill this spot with jam
  9. Place the hollow heart on top of the jam covered heart
  10. Bake hearts at 350° on a parchment lined baking sheet for 5-7 minutes until brown around the edges
  11. Cool and Serve
  12. You can skip the sprinkling of powdered sugar, I thought it looked more festive...
Makes 24 cookies
The trick to making these is to divide the dough into 4 parts; take one part of chilled dough out of the freezer at a time to roll and cut out cookies. The rest of the dough will stay cold in the freezer. Keep in mind, the dough is much easier to handle when it is chilled.

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