My niece Madelyn is allergic to eggs and peanuts so the last few holidays I've worried about making sure there is something sweet that she can eat. It's not fair for the rest of us to be scarfing down cakes and cookies and telling her that she can't have them. For Easter, I made these. These are a hit. Not only did she have something to eat when the rest of us were eating dessert but she took some home and kept asking for more. That's a compliment! The raspberry jam is optional. I usually do half with and half without.
Oh, and did I mention that making these butter cookies is insanely easy???!
2 sticks butter, softened
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
couple tablespoons of raspberry jam
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put all the ingredients (except of the jam) in a large mixing bowl and beat together with an electric mixer for a long time. You're probably looking at 10 minutes or so. It will start off very crumbly and dry, and will slowly turn into a thick and creamy batter. It'll look like frosting (and smell like a vanilla shake!).
On a parchment lined baking sheet, drop rounded teaspoons of batter at least an inch and a half apart. I use a second spoon to remove the dough from the teaspoon. Double check your oven's temperature (If you don't already have an oven thermometer, get one, they're super handy). If it's higher than 350 the cookies will burn after 10 minutes. Once you know the oven is 350, bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes. Take them out before they brown on top. The bottoms should be golden.
When they come out of the oven, let them rest on the cookie sheet for a minute or two and then using the back of a 1/4 teaspoon gently press into the cookie (to leave a slight impression of the spoon). Don't press too hard or too deeply. You just want to make a tiny reservoir to hold the jam. Using the same 1/4 teaspoon, fill with jam and drop a little less than 1/4 teaspoon into each cookie. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool.
The cookies can be left out overnight and stay fresh. If you want to cover them, keep them in a single layer and cover with foil slightly tented. The jam will take about 12-15 hours to fully dry. But you'll eat them faster than that so it doesn't matter!
All text and photographs (except where noted otherwise) © 2008, 2009 Food is to love / Andrea Quigley