Raspberry-filled Sandwich Cookies (Luxembourgli)
Blanched almond slices
- (about 4 ounces)
Egg whites (4 to 5),
- completely free of yolk
Cream of tartar
(scant) almond extract
FOR THE RASPBERRY
Unsalted butter, slightly
Seedless raspberry preserves
- or jam
FOR THE COOKIES:
Heat the oven to 325F. Line 2 very large baking sheets (or 3 smaller
ones) with baking parchment. Toast the almonds in the oven, stirring
occasionally, for 6 to 8 minutes, or until tinged with brown. Set
aside to cool. Reset the oven to 300F.
Grind the cooled almonds and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar in a food
processor until very fine but not oily. Thoroughly stir the
remaining powdered sugar into the almonds.
Combine the granulated sugar and 3 tablespoons of hot tap water in a
small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring just to a boil,
stirring. Cover the pan and boil for 1 1/2 minutes to allow the steam
to wasu the sugar crystals from the sides of the pan. Uncover and
continue boiling, lifting the pan and swirling the contents
occasionally, but never stirring, for about 1 minute longer until the
syrup thickens, bubbles vigorously, and reaches the firm ball stage
(240 F on a candy thermometer). To test for doneness without a
thermometer, remove the pan from the heat and drop a small amount of
the syrup into a cup of ice water; let stand for 10 seconds. The
syrup should form a firm ball when squeezed between the fingers. Set
the syrup aside.
Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer on medium speed until
frothy. Add the cream of tartar, raising the mixer speed to high.
Continue beating just to soft peaks; turn off mixer. Return the
syrup to the burner and reheat just to simmering. With the mixer on
high speed, immediately pour a thin, steady stream of syrup down the
side of the bowl (avoid the beaters or whip as the syrup will stick)
until all of the syrup is added. Add the vanilla and almond extracts.
Continue beating until the mixture cools to lukewarm.
Use a rubber spatula to fold the almond mixture evenly into the
beaten egg whites. Immediately drop the mixture from small spoons
into 1-inch kisses spacing about 3/4 inch apart on the parchment
lined baking sheets. (Alternately, pipe the mixture into 1-inch
rounds using a pastry bag fitted with a plain or open star 3/8-inch
diameter tip.) Place the pans staggered on racks in the center half
of the oven. Bake for 19 to 22 minutes, reversing pans from front to
back and switching racks about halfway through, until barely tinged
and firm on top but still slightly soft inside. Let the pans stand
on wire racks until the meringues are completely cooled. Peel from
the paper. Store aiftight until assembled.
To prepare the buttercream: Beat togather the butter, powdered
sugar, and preserves until light and fluffy. Spread with a knife (or
pipe using a pastry bag and tibe) small amounts of the cream over the
flat sides of half the cookies. Top with the r4emaining meringues,
pressing together tightly. Store the cookies airtight and
refrigerated for up to 24 hours; they will soften too much if left
longer. (For longer storage, freze, tightly wrapped, for up to 2
weeks; thaw just before serving.) Allow the cookies to warm up
slightly before serving.
Makes about forty 1 1/4-inch sandwich cookies.
[THE BALTIMORE SUN; November 25, 1990]
Posted by Fred Peters.