Raspberry Lemon Linzer Cookies

Lemon and raspberry cookies cut in heart shapes, perfect for Valentine’s Day!

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Valentine’s Day is now less then a week away! Have you bought your sweetie a gift? If you haven’t check out my Valentine’s Day gift guides. Have you made your reservations? Planned a special date? Or are you a last minute planner? We booked our dinner reservation and I got my husband a gift a few weeks ago. This year we are going to our favourite restaurant. It’s walking distance from our house so we can enjoy a long dinner, share a few too many drinks before safely walking home.

For our first Valentine’s Day we dressed up and went out to a fine dining restaurant, ate a very expensive preset menu and ordered oysters. We thought it would be the perfect dinner. But of course Calvin hated his duck and we discovered that neither of us like oysters. The dinner was so expensive my husband still won’t tell me how much the dinner costs. We were collage kids with no money so this dinner was a really big deal. Although it wasn’t perfect we still look back at it as a great memory of our early days.

The year after that we got teen burgers from A&W, I made some treats and we had a picnic in the living room. Over the last six years we’ve done everything from fancy dinners to fast food. Last year we made homemade heart shaped pizza (my pizza dough recipe) and chocolate lava cakes (YUM!). Regardless of how we’ve celebrated we’ve spent quality time together showing our love for the other and reminding ourselves how important our relationship is.

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I love to celebrate everything, big and small. I like to show people that I care about them. I love to give gifts, but giving people something you made is so special. These cookies are perfect to give to family and friends or serve to your sweetheart. They are also just really cute and festive!

Linzer cookies are super simple to make kind of like a sugar cookie but way better! But they have almond flour and are made without leavener. They are delicate, flavourful and rich. The addition on lemon zest adds a fresh light citrus flavour to the cookie. Raspberry jam is sandwiched between two cookies to add a delicious berry flavour.

These cookies are so so so good. They are also really fun to make. They look really impressive too so they are perfect to giveaway. I love when a simple baked good makes someones day! These are totally worth it!

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Lemon Raspberry Linzer Cookies

Yields: 12 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup Unsalted Butter
  • 1/2 cup White Sugar
  • Zest of One Lemon
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour
  • 3/4 cup Almond Flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt
  • Seedless Raspberry Jam
  • Confectioner’s Sugar

Directions:

In a medium bowl whisk together all purpose flour, almond flour and salt together. Set aside.

Using a stand mixer beat butter, sugar until pale until fluffy. About 2 minutes. Add lemon zest, egg yolk and vanilla extract, beat until smooth. Add dry ingredients to the bowl and mix on low until just combined. Divide dough into two disks, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Roll dough a quarter inch thick. Using a medium sized heart shaped cookie cutter cut out 24 hearts. Using a smaller heart shaped cookie cutter cut the centre out of 12 of the cookies. Place the cookies on the baking sheets. Place the cookie sheets in the fridge for an hour to chill.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes until the edges are just beginning to turn brown. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

Once completely cool dust cookie tops with confectioner sugar. Spread 1/2 teaspoon of jam on each of the cookie bottoms. Leave a boarder around the jam to ensure the jam doesn’t spill out the sides of the cookies. Place the tops pf the cookies on the bottom.

Chill the cookies in the fridge or 30 minutes before serving to set the jam. Store in the fridge for up to one week.

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.

Lemon Raspberry Linzer Cookies - Valentine's Day Treats, yummy!
Lemon Raspberry Linzer Cookies - Valentine's Day Treats, yummy!

Vegan Cookie Dough Energy Balls

The post Christmas sugar crash is totally real. I find it takes at least a month for me to get used to not having dessert and treats every day. Why do we do that to ourselves? I don’t know, but it will never stop. So as we clean up our diets a bit after the holidays I need a little something to get me through my sugar cravings.

These energy balls do just the trick. They have enough sweetness to give you that fix, but not enough to give you a sugar crash. Plus they are full of rolled oats, fibre, and healthy fats. They are the perfect dessert or mid day snack. And they are actually really filling.

These tiny balls contain rolled oats, ground flax, peanut butter, unsweetened coconut flakes and mini chocolate chips!

I also love using real maple syrup as the sweetener and binder for this recipe. I love that it is an al natural sweetener and it makes these energy balls truly vegan unlike using honey (here’s some info on veganism and honey). Also because it is more liquid than honey you can use a little less. Anytime I can cut back on sugar in a recipe I will do it.

This recipe also requires that you use natural peanut butter. To get the energy balls to bind you require the runny texture of natural peanut butter. Also we want to control the sweetness of the energy balls. Conventional peanut butter is loaded with chemicals, low quality fats and tons of sugar. And honestly if you taste them side by side conventional peanut butter doesn’t even taste like peanuts.

Packing all these whole foods into a portable delicious snack is perfect for curing your sweet tooth.

Vegan Cookie Dough Energy Balls

Yields: 20 Energy Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Natural Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 cup Real Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup Rolled Oats
  • 2/3 cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
  • 1/2 cup Ground Flaxseed
  • 4 tbsp Mini Chocolate Chips

 

Directions:

In a medium bowl combine peanut butter, maple syrup and vanilla extract until smooth. Add oats, coconut flakes, flaxseed and chocolate chips. Mix until combined.

Cover and place in the fridge to chill for an hour. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. Serve immediately or store in the fridge for up to a week.

Adapted from Cooking Classy.

 

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Banana Nut Muffin
Vegan Cookie Dough Energy Balls
Vegan Cookie Dough Energy Balls

Brown Butter Shortbread with Maple Glaze

Today’s post is the very last Christmas cookie recipe I will be sharing for 2018. How did this month go so fast? I cant believe Christmas is in just a few days. If you still haven’t checked out week one through three of this series click here, here and here.

Today’s recipe is a variation on shortbread cookies. I know people think they are dry and tasteless, so I’ve added brown butter and brown sugar for a deeper flavour. I also added a delicious maple glaze to make then ever more flavourful.

These cookies are great because you probably already have all the ingredients in your pantry. These are also a slice and bake cookie so there isn’t any rolling and cutting out shapes to do. Slice and bake cookies are so simple to make.

So if you’re up for some more Christmas baking give these or any of the other recipes in this series a try. This is my last recipe post before Christmas, so I hope you have enjoyed all the festive holiday content over the past few months as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing it. Merry Christmas!

Brown Butter Shortbread with Maple Glaze

Yields: 24 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 1/4 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • 2/3 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 2/3 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Cup Confectioners sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Real Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon Half and Half
  • Optional: Raw Turbinado Sugar

Directions:

Melt butter over medium heat in a light coloured skillet. Swirl the pan occasionally. Cook until butter browns and has a nutty aroma, 2-3 minutes. pour butter into a bowl and place in the fridge to solidify for about 30 minutes. The brown butter should have a similar texture to softened butter.

Whisk flour and salt together set aside.

In a stand mixer beat the cooled brown butter on high until creamy and smooth. Add white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla, cream until smooth. Add dry ingredients to the mixer and beat on low until just combined.

Form dough into two 8 inch logs. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 1-2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350°F, line baking sheets with parchment and set aside.

Roll the logs of dough in turbinado sugar and slice each log into 12 equal sized pieces. Place cookies on lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

In a small bowl combine confectioner sugar, maple syrup and half and half. Drizzle glaze over cooled cookies. Place in the fridge to set.

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

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Peppermint Bark

Today marks one week until Christmas….. let that sink in a moment.

Ok how are we all doing? Stressed, excited, organized, overwhelmed? Personally I’m feeling pretty good. I think I have things pretty under control. Since we travel at Christmas I’ve always had to be organized well in advance. And I think this year will be the smoothest… knock on wood. 

Today I am sharing a recipe I have made since I was a kid. I would make this with my mom and brother every Christmas as a kid and it’s still one of my favourites today. Peppermint Bark is seriously simple to make and so delicious. It looks great on a cookie tray, and it’s also a great hostess gift.

It’s so easy you can even make it in the microwave. Don’t we all need easy at the holidays? So give it a try and let me know what you think.

Peppermint Bark

Yields: 1 sheet pan

Ingredients:

  • 16 ounces White Chocolate
  • 8 ounces Milk or Dark Chocolate
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Coconut Oil, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon Peppermint Extract
  • 5 Candy Canes, crushed

Directions:

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a microwave safe bowl melt 6 ounces of the milk chocolate in 30 second intervals (1-2 mins), string in between. Stir in remaining chocolate and 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil. Spread the chocolate thinly on the prepared baking sheet. Allow to set in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

Repeat the same melting process with 12 ounces of the white chocolate. Stir remaining chocolate, remaining coconut oil and peppermint extract into the chocolate. Pour chocolate over the set milk chocolate and spread out to cover. Sprinkle crushed candy canes all over the white chocolate. Return bark to the fridge to set for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Once set break bark into sizes of your choosing. Store in an air tight container in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. You can also store in your freezer for a few months.

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Peppermint Chocolate Cookies

Week three in my Christmas cookie series has arrived! If you missed the last two weeks find those posts here, and here.

This weeks cookie is so so delicious. These cookies are so delicious and rich, there are the perfect chocolate cookie for your Christmas spread. I actually have to make a few more batches of these since we can’t stop eating them!

I love the combination of a chewy brownie like double chocolate cookie, cooling peppermint and rich white chocolate. It truly is perfection. These are also great warmed up and eaten with a fork like a warm brownie. YUM!

Now when it comes to decorating these cookies with white chocolate the world is your oyster. Light drizzle, heavy drizzle. Half dunk, full dunk. Go ahead and do whatever you love. Just remember to work fast so your crushed candy canes will stick! Also did you know you can buy crushed candy canes? I found that out shortly after making this recipe and am so annoyed I wasn’t informed earlier. Crushing candy canes is such a pain. Oh well I guess I can buy pre crushed for next year!

Make sure to come back next week for the final Christmas cookie in this series…. I can’t believe we’re already there!

Peppermint Chocolate Cookies

Yields: 24 cookies 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1/2 Cup White Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract 
  • 1 Teaspoon Peppermint Extract
  • 1 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 Cup + 2 Tablespoons Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda 
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips
  • 8 Ounces White Chocolate
  • 3 Candy Canes, crushed

Directions:

Using your stand mixer beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add the sugars and beat on medium high speed until fluffy and combined. Mix in the egg, vanilla and peppermint on high speed. 

In a medium bowl whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt together until combined. On low speed add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined. Beat in the chocolate chips. Cover and chill for at least 3 hours or overnight. 

Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop out dough and roll into balls. Place on the cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

Melt the white chocolate in the microwave, string in 30 second intervals. Drizzle or dip each cooled cookie in the white chocolate. Sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Repeat for all the cookies. Place in the refrigerator to set completely.

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction.

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Sugar Cookie Snowflakes
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