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Cherry Thumbprints

Cherry Thumbprints
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Yield: About 2 dozen cookies

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  • 1/2 cup blanched whole almonds
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 small jar cherry preserves


Put the almonds and sugar into the bowl of a food processor and process nuts to a fine meal. Transfer to a small bowl. Cream the butter with an electric mixer, gradually adding the almond mixture. Beat in the egg until the mixture is light, then add the extracts. Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl, stirring it into the creamed mixture in several stages. Cover the dough and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Pinch off pieces of dough and roll them into 1-1/4-inch balls. Place the balls onto ungreased cookie sheets, pressing a thumb deeply into the center of the dough to make a large crater. Leave about 2 inches between each cookie. Mound the craters with cherry preserves and bake the cookies for 15 to 20 minutes, until the bottom edge of the cookie just begins to brown. Cool briefly on sheets, then transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

Updated Thursday, May 8th, 2003

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