Jam Thumbprint Cookies

Adapted from America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book

1/2 cup seedless raspberry (or any other variety) jam
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
12 tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
3 oz (6 tbsp) cream cheese, softened
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat. Fill a small Ziploc bag (Amy's note: I used my pastry bag, makes it easy if you have one!) with the jam. Whisk the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder together in a medium bowl.

2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-6 minutes. Beat in the cream cheese, egg, and vanilla until combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl and beater(s) as necessary.

3. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture until combined, about 30 seconds.

4. Working with 1 1/2 tsp of dough at a time (Amy's note: I just used a heaping teaspoonful, didn't bother measuring exactly), roll the dough into balls and lay them on the prepared baking sheets, spaced about 1 1/2 inches apart. Make an indentation in the center of each cookie with your thumb. If you find your thumb sticking to the cookies, wet it a bit with water.

5. Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, until they are just beginning to set and are lightly browned around the edges, about 10 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven and, working quickly, gently reshape the indentation with the bottom of a teaspoon measure. Snip a small corner off the bag of jam (or get your pastry bag ready) and carefully fill each indentation with about 1/2 tsp of the jam. Put the cookies back in the oven and continue to bake until lightly golden, 12-14 minutes.

6. Let the cookies cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely, about 30 minutes, before serving.

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