Delicious chocolate cookies with toasted walnuts and filled with a sweet fig jam make for a lovely holiday treat.
- Cook Time
- Prep Time
- 40 ServingsServings
- 2 cups All-purpose flour
- 1 cup California walnuts, toasted
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- pinch of ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled butter, cut in 15 - 20 pieces
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For assembling and decorating the cookies:
- 1/2 - 2/3 cup fig jam or apricot jam
- 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
- 1/2 cup finely chopped California walnuts
1 In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the flour, walnuts, sugar, cocoa powder, salt and nutmeg. Process until the nuts are finely ground.
2 Add the butter and pulse until blended into the dry ingredients and the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a small cup, whisk together the egg yolks, water and vanilla. Add to the flour mixture and process until the dough holds together in a stiff mass.
3 Transfer the dough into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 - 60 minutes, until firm but not hard.
4 Preheat the oven to 350ºF, and cover cookie sheets with parchment paper. Divide the chilled dough in half (keep the piece you are not working on refrigerated). On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out to a thickness slightly less than 1/4-inch.
5 If the top of the dough is sticky, sprinkle it lightly with additional flour. Using a heart-shaped (or round) cutter 1 1/2 - 2 inches in diameter, cut cookies from the rolled-our dough. Gather the scraps together, reroll them, and cut additional cookies.
6 As cookies are cut, place them, about 1/2-inch apart, on the prepared cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes, until the cookies look dry. Cool about 2 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely before filling. Continue rolling, cutting and baking until all the dough is used.
7 To assemble and decorate the cookies, place half of them in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Spread each one with about 1/2 teaspoon of jam, then top with a second cookie. When all the cookies have been filled, top each with about 1/2 teaspoon melted chocolate, spreading the chocolate with
8 Sprinkle the chocolate lightly with walnuts. Let the cookies stand 2 - 3 hours, or until the chocolate if firm, then store them in an airtight container.
9 An alternative to rolling out the dough: For an easy, though not heart-shaped variation, the dough can be chilled, sliced and baked like refrigerator cookies. Place the prepared dough on a lightly floured surface and divide it in half.
10 With your hands, roll and pat each piece into a log about 9 inches long and 1 1/2 inches across. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for several hours, until firm. (The dough will keep refrigerated for several days.) Cut the logs into slices slightly less than 1/4-inch thick, then bake, fill and decor
Source: California Walnut Board