Monday, February 09, 2015

Under My Thumb: Cream Cheese Thumbprint Cookies

A thumbprint cookie is a great treat to make, providing all the flavors of a sandwich cookie with just a fraction of the effort. The vibrant color of the jam also looks great against the creamy complexion of the cookie, and you can't have Valentine's Day without lots of red! Instead of just my thumb, though, I wanted to make heart-shaped cookies. There are various methods for creating the heart impression, and I would have used one, but then I remembered: I had decorative glass hearts that would do the work for me in just one go!

Cream Cheese Thumbprint Cookies jam hearts valentine's day

Cream Cheese Thumbprint Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup jam, stirred until smooth (I used seedless raspberry)

Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar together until light and fluffy. Stir in vanilla extract, then blend in flour until smooth. Cover dough and chill in the fridge for 45 minutes (the dough is very soft, so this step is important).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and line baking sheets with foil or parchment.

Using a one-Tablespoon scoop or measuring spoon, scoop dough and roll into balls, then place on lined sheets a few inches apart. Press down in the middle with your floured thumb (or whatever you're using the make the indentation—see notes below). Fill each indentation with a scant 1/2 teaspoon of jam, and bake for 12-13 minutes, or until just golden. Remove and let cool on sheets before moving. Once completely cooled, store cookies in an airtight container between sheets of waxed paper.

Notes: These cookies are adapted from this recipe. The original calls for using two Tablespoons of dough per cookie, but one Tablespoon was perfect, and yielded exactly 56 cookies. It's better to underfill slightly than to overfill with jam—use the tip of your spoon to gently spread the jam evenly throughout the indentation before baking. Instead of your thumb for a round impression, you can try using your index finger to make a "V"-shaped impression to look like a heart :-)


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