Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine's Day Jelly Cookies

Every Christmas for I don't know how many years I've been baking jelly cookies for my kids.  Both of them would probably say these are their favorite Christmas cookies.  My son even insisted I bring them to his first grade class's Christmas party.  Interesting party, as the kids--aside from my son--had never eaten a jelly cookie and thus wouldn't touch them; not a problem, for my son and the adults present ate them all.  Because they are so good, I've decided that they should be made more often during the year, so I'm using a heart-shaped cutter and making them for Valentine's Day.  When I make these for Christmas, I use a one-inch round cookie cutter, but my heart-shaped cookie cutter is slightly bigger, about 1 3/4 inches across and one inch vertically down the center of the heart.  Just use the smallest heart you can find, or use a one-inch round cutter.  Before investing in King Arthur cookie cutters of varying sizes, I used to use the cap off a bottle of Gerber baby juice.  I'm not really sure how many dozen cookies this recipe makes, as I've never counted, but I'm estimating about six dozen.

Jelly Cookies

1 cup softened butter (2 sticks)
1/2 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam

Preheat oven to 300°.  Beat butter, sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Stir in flour to make a stiff dough.  Roll dough out one quarter at a time to 1/4 inch.  Cut with a one-inch cookie cutter.  Place one inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.  Press center of each cookie with your fingertip.  Spoon 1/4 teaspoon of jam into the hollow.  Bake at 300° for 18 minutes until edges just begin to brown.  Cool on wire racks.  If any cookies are left after the first day, store in covered containers.

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