It was a dreary day on the Erie Canal. The grey sky spat a steady cold drizzle. The normally beautiful greenery just looked miserable.
Being on the water is great for hot climates… it cools things down. Unfortunately the same is true when it’s cold outside. Rather than shiver and glower at the miserable weather I decided to make use of it. Cold, wet… it was perfect baking weather!*
I grabbed the butter and started in on a favorite shortbread-like recipes standing in front of the preheating oven to warm up.
Strawberry almond thumbprint cookies are simple, quick, and always a hit. Not to mention they look beautiful and far more complicated than they actually are. My favorite combination. Of course you can substitute shortening for butter but I’m a purist. You can get good cookies with shortening, but greatness? No. The gorgeous taste and delicate texture only comes with real thing.
Strawberry Almond Canal Cookies
- 1 c. butter
- 1/2 c. sugar
- 2 c. flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 T almond extract
- 1/3 c Sesame Seeds
- Strawberry Jam
- Preheat oven to 350◦ F
- Pour sesame seeds into small bowl
- Cream together butter, sugar, vanilla, and almond extract
- Mix in flour and salt
- Form into walnut-sized balls
- Roll in sesame seeds and place on ungreased baking sheet (cookies can be close together as they do not expand when baked.
- Press thumb gently into of each ball, leaving depression
- Spoon jam into depression
- Bake for 10 minutes or until just a touch of golden-brown appears on the bottom
* Cold weather is the optimal time to bake shortbread, make pie crust or anything in the glorious flaky, crumbly, buttery vein of things. Make the most of your cold, miserable weather and heat up your boat or apartment at the same time.
Unfortunately the opposite is true of bread and yeast-based pastries because the yeast needs warmth to grow. If you are planning on baking bread wait til after your galley is nice and toasty from baking the cookies.