My love affair with Jam Thumbprint Cookies began many years ago. I was young, fresh out of college and working in a small office located in the coastal town of Manchester by the Sea. Perhaps you have heard of it? It is where the movie “Manchester by the Sea” takes place. Anyway, during my lunch hour I used to love to walk around the waterfront and it’s small but quaint downtown area. I would sometimes pass a little café that sold a few baked goods along with coffee and sandwiches. That is where I discovered Jam Thumbprint Cookies.
I remember that I would find myself thinking about these cookies as I worked through the morning hours and would inevitably decide if I “happened” to pass the café on my daily walk, I would treat myself to just one cookie.
Let’s just say that I ended up in this café often enough that I got to know the proprietor very well. One day I causally asked her about the recipe for these fabulous cookies. I really did not expect her to give me the recipe as I knew these cookies to be a popular item. Surly it was a super secret recipe that she kept locked up in a safe somewhere. Imagine my surprise when she not only gave me the recipe but told me where it had come from.
You too can find this recipe within the works of the iconic “Better Homes and Garden Cookbook”. The recipe I have for you here is a slight variation of that recipe. I highly suggest you use either recipe and make these buttery, jam filled, crazy delicious cookies at your earliest convenience.
Jam Thumbprint CookiesPrint Recipe
Jam Thumbprint Cookies
Makes 14 to 18 cookies
- 1-1/2 cups - all purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon - kosher salt
- 2/3 cup - unsalted butter - room temperature = 10 2/3 tablespoons
- 1/3 cup - sugar
- 2 - egg yolks - slightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon - vanilla
For the toppings:
- 2 - egg whites
- 1 cup - finely chopped nuts - pecans or walnuts work well *
- 1/2 cup - jam - raspberry, strawberry, orange marmalade or whatever your favorite flavor happens to be.
Preheat oven to 375 F. degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
To make the dough.
Whisk together the flour and the salt in a medium size bowl.
In a separate large bowl, cream the butter and the sugar together until well combined with an electric mixer.
Beat in the egg yolks and the vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if needed.
At a lower speed, add in the flour mixture and mix until you have clumps of dough. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
To make the cookies.
On your work space have ready a small bowl of the egg whites and a plate of chopped nuts.
Form and roll the chilled dough into balls about 1-1/4 inches across.
One at a time, take each ball of dough and dip in the eggs whites to coat and then roll in the chopped nuts. Place the dough balls on the prepared sheet pan about 2 inches apart.
Now for the fun part - with your thumb make a deep indentation into the dough ball. Repair any cracks that may appear.
Bake for about 15 minutes. The bottoms will slightly brown and you will see the thumb mark rise a bit. Cool the cookies on a cooling rack.
In a small bowl, stir until smooth about 1/2 cup of jam. Spoon out a small amount of jam onto the cookies, filling in the centers.
- Use any kind of jam or preserves that you want. You could even fill these cookies with chocolate or caramel.
- I like to make these cookies on the large side. If you want, you could make them a little smaller by forming 1 inch balls. Just make sure you adjust cooking times. Bonus - you will end up with more cookies!
- *You can make these cookies without the nuts.
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