Helen’s Linzer Cookies – Linecké

Linzer Cookies – Linecké

Linecké cookies are on every Czech table at Christmas. Although the origin of these cookies is Austrian, they have been part of the Czech Christmas tradition since the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The recipe first appeared in Linz, Austria in the 17th century. These small delegate cookies are easy to make, beautiful to see and absolutely delicious to eat.

Helen’s Linzer Cookies – Linecké

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (230 gr.) All-purpose flour
  • 10 tablespoons (140 gr.) Cold butter
  • 1/3 cup (70 gr.) Powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract or 1 packet of vanilla sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice, or 1/4 tsp. Citric acid in one teaspoon water
  • Red current jam
  • Powder sugar for decoration

Instructons:

Sift four and sugar together in a large bowl. Grate butter over bowl with a coarse grater. Add egg yolk, lemon juice and vanilla. Mix with hands to create a smooth dough very gradually incorporating the flour. Wrap the dough in plastic and let it rest overnight in fridge.

On a lightly floured sheet of baking paper roll dough to about 2-3 mm. A trick to rolling dough evenly is to use two 2-3 mm knitting needles, lay them parallel on your work area on either side of the dough. Roll out the dough with a rolling-pin until the it runs smoothly over the knitting needles.

Use small cookie cutters (1 to 1 ½ inch), traditional shapes are stars, flowers and hearts. Cut the shapes into the sheet of dough then remove the unwanted dough leaving the cookies on the baking paper. The cookies can be spaced close to each other, leaving 1/8 inch space between them. Cut a small round hole in the center of half of the cookies. If you don’t have a small round cutter, use half of a ball point pen case.

Slide the baking paper with cookies onto a sheet pan and bake at 350 degree Fahrenheit, 330 degree Fahrenheit for a convection oven, for 5 to 8 minutes. (180 degrees Celsius, 165 degree Celsius)  Watch the cookies closely. The second the edges start to get a bit golden remove them from the oven. Slide the paper and cookies onto a rack for cooling. When the cookies are completely cooled lightly sprinkle powder sugar onto the half of the cookies with a hole in the center. Generously spread red current jam on the other half of the cookies without holes. Press the two halves together. You can add a little extra jam in the center of each cookie if you like. Place the Linzer cookies in a sealed box until Christmas. If you would like the cookies to be soft put a half of an apple in the box. It is best to make these one or two weeks before Christmas.

This recipe is adapted from a Czech recipe by Helena Hrbkova of Protivín .

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