No matter how many candles you light up, inscience you burn out or odor tablets you buy there is nothing like the smell of freshly baked cookies.
Ischler Cookies are classic austrian sandwich cookies filled with a hard chocolate ganache and fruit preserves. Mine are just filled with chocolate ganache which is a lot smoother than the original one and has no apricot preserves, which of course you can add if you wanted to.
I hope you had a great christmas and may 2016 end as well as mine did.
- Cookie dough:
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 cubs sliced almonds
- ½ large egg, beaten
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ fine sea salt
- Cut the butter into ½ inch cubes and let the cubes soften slightly while measuring out the remaining ingredients. The butter should be cool but soft enough to press flat (60 ° to 70 ° F/ 15 ° to 21 ° C).
- Process the powdered sugar and almonds until the almonds are very fine. Add the butter and process until smooth and creamy. Add the egg and vanilla and process until incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add it to the processor and pulse just until incorporated. The mixture will be in moist and crumbly particles and hold together if pinched.
- Scrape the mixture into a plastic bag and, using your knuckles and the heels of your hands, press it together. Transfer the dough to a large sheet of plastic wrap and use the wrap to press down on the dough, kneading it until it is smooth. Divide the dough into quarters, about 6.9 ounces/ 195 grams each. Wrap each piece loosely with plastic wrap and press to flatten into discs. Rewrap tightly and place in a gallon-size reclosable freezer bag. Refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours or up to 2 days to firm and give the dough a chance to absorb the moisture evenly, which will make rolling easier.
- Twenty minutes or longer before baking, set an oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 ° F/ 175 ° C.
- Remove a dough disc from the refrigerator and set it on a lightly floured surface. Lightly flour the dough and cover it with plastic wrap. Let the dough soften for about 10 minutes, or until it is malleable enough to roll. Roll the dough ⅛ inch thick, moving it from time to time and adding more flour if necessary to keep it from sticking. (See Notes.) Cut out twenty 2 ¼ inch cookies. Set them a minimum of ½ inch apart on a cookie sheet. Set aside any scraps, covered with plastic wrap, to knead together with the scraps from the next three batches.
- Bake for 4 minutes. For even baking, rotate the cookie sheet halfway around. Continue baking for 2 to 6 minutes, or just until they begin to brown at the edges.
- Set the cookie sheet on a wire rack and let the cookies cool for about 1 minute so that they will be firm enough to transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Use a pancake turner to lift the cookies onto another wire rack. Cool completely.
- For the ganache:
- Heat the cream until boiling and pour into bowl with chopped chocolate; whisk until the chocolate is fully disolved.
- Beranbaum, Rose Levy (2014-10-28). The Baking Bible (Kindle Locations 11802-11806). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kindle Edition.