If your valentine is anything like mine, he (or she) doesn't want any more stuff to clutter up the joint. There's one thing, however, sure to win his (or her) heart and which is guaranteed not to be just one more thing.....meltingly beautiful and delectable linzer hearts. I'm a big believer that a homemade present is the ultimate in proclaiming love and devotion, so why not do what I'm going to do this weekend, and whip up a batch of these darlings?
I use the tried and true recipe from The Silver Palate Cookbook, and actually do it over two days. I make the dough one day, refrigerate it, and then bake it off the next. While a little bit time consuming, it's not difficult at all, and what better way to proclaim your love than a teensy bit of a production?
Oh, and after you go to all this trouble (at least let 'em think it's been trouble) enjoy the wonderful Valentine's Day dinner at your favorite restaurant to which you're about to be taken. Trust me.
makes about 2 dozen cookies
3/4 pound unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted
1 cup cornstarch
2 cups shelled walnuts, finely grated
1/2 cup red raspberry preserves
Cream buttter and one cup of the sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and mix well.
Sift together the flour and cornstarch and add to the creamed mixture and blend well. Mix ground walnuts in thoroughly.
Gather dough into a ball, wrap in wax paper and chill for at least four to six hours or overnight.
Roll dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a small heartshaped cookie cutter about 1 1/2 inches long, cut out cookies and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. With a smaller hear-shaped cookie cutter, cut smaller hearts out of the middle of half of the cookies. Chill cookies for 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Bake cookies for 10 to 15 minutes or until they are evenly and only very lightly browned. Remove and cool on a rack.
While they are still warm, spread half of the cookies--the ones without the hearts cut out obviously--with raspberry preserves, using about 1 teaspoon of jam for each. Top each with one of the cookies that have the heart shaped hole in the middle.
Sift the remaining 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar into a bowl and press the tops and bottoms of the cookies into the sugar to coat.
Believe me, your Valentine is going to taste the love!