Apricot preserves peek out of these buttery, tender sugar cookies. Make them throughout the year with a variety of cookie cutter shapes. —Schelby Thompson, Camden Wyoming, Delaware
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
- 2 large eggs, separated
- 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 cup ground almonds
- 3/4 cup apricot preserves
- In a large bowl, cream butter and 3/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Shape dough into a ball; chill for 1 hour or until firm.
- On a surface dusted with confectioners' sugar, roll dough to 1/8-in. thickness; cut with a 3-in. pumpkin-shaped cookie cutter. Cut a 1-1/2-in. pumpkin from the center of half the cookies and remove (set aside small pumpkin cutouts to bake separately).
- Place on greased baking sheets. Beat egg whites until frothy. Combine almonds and remaining sugar. Brush each cookie with egg whites; sprinkle with almond mixture. Bake at 350° for 6-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove immediately to wire racks to cool completely.
- Spread 1-1/2 teaspoons of apricot preserves on the bottoms of the solid cookies; place cookies with cutout centers, almond side up, over filling. Yield: 2 dozen.
Originally published as Cutout Pumpkin Sandwich Cookies in Taste of Home's Halloween Annual 2006, p64
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