to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) with the oven rack in the center of the oven. Place
the almonds on a baking sheet and bake about 8-10 minutes, or until lightly
browned and fragrant. Remove from oven and once the nuts have cooled, place in a food processor,
along with 1/4 cup (50 grams) white sugar, and process until finely
In a separate
bowl, whisk or sift together the flour, cinnamon, salt, and lemon zest. In the bowl of your electric mixer
(or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and remaining 1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract and egg
yolks. Finally, beat in the ground almonds and then the flour mixture. Divide the dough in half, cover each half with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm (30-60
minutes, or up to two days).
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
(180 degrees C. Line two baking sheets
with parchment paper.
Remove one ball of dough
from the refrigerator. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough until it is about 1/4 inch (.5 cm) thick. Using a 3 inch (7.5 cm) cookie cutter (round, square, heart, etc.) cut out the
cookies. Place the cookies about 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart
on the prepared baking sheet. Use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the
centers of half of the cookies on the baking sheet. Reroll any scraps and cut
out the remaining cookies. Repeat with the second ball of dough. (Note:
If you find the cookies are soft, place the baking sheets with the unbaked
cookies in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes to chill the dough. This will
prevent the cookies from spreading and losing their shape when baked.) Bake the
cookies for about 12 minutes or until lightly browned
around the edges. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
Assemble Cookies: Place the
cut out cookies on a baking sheet and lightly
dust the tops
with powdered sugar. Spread a thin layer of jam on the bottom surface of the
full cookie (top of cookie will face out). Place the cut-out
cookie on top and gently sandwich them together. Using a small spoon or a piping
the cut-out with a little more jam.
The filled cookies
will soften when stored. If you want the cookies to stay crisp, assemble the day of serving.
The assembled cookies can be stored in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for several days.
Makes about 26 - 3 inch (7.5 cm)