Our Christmas tree is up, the lights outside have been strung and the girls and I are singing along to holiday music nearly every evening (much to the chagrin of my music-making husband, who doesn’t appreciate my tone-deaf voice nearly as much as my eleven-month-old). The holiday season is in full throttle, and things are especially accelerated for me this year, as I’ll be traveling to Denver mid-month to teach a class for Craftsy (I’ll share more about that soon!). That means I’m trying to fit in holiday baking, shopping, wrapping and gift giving within, well, the next week. Woooooah. Pass me some of that eggnog, Mr. Crosby. Luckily I have these super simple Almond-Cherry Thumbprint Cookies in my back pocket, which I can whip up in no time. The recipe comes from my NEW BOOK (!!!) and I’m so excited to share a sneak peak with you below. The book is available for here!

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Back to these cookies. They’re made with almond flour, giving them a delicious nutty flavor, as well as making them naturally gluten-free (which makes them a great addition to holiday cookie platters if you’re serving folks with food allergies). Since the flavors of almond and cherry are as compatible as Santa and his elves, I spoon a bit of cherry jam into the center of each for some glistening, sweet dazzle. Best of all, in my opinion, is that the batter gets pulsed together in minutes in the food processor.

This is probably the last you’ll hear from me until after the holidays, and I want to wish you a season filled with peace, joy, love and delicious food. This has been quite the year, and I can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store.

Happy Holidays!

Much love to you all, Nicki

*Cookie photo credited to Caroline Kaye Photography

Almond-Cherry Thumbprint Cookies

These irresistible almond thumbprint cookies are perfect for holiday cookie tins. Made with almond flour (sometimes called almond meal), they’re naturally gluten-free, with a wonderful almond flavor that’s enhanced by a dab of cherry jam (although you can use any jam flavor you like). The idea for the recipe came from my friend and cookbook author Samantha Seneviratne, who makes a stellar hazelnut thumbprint cookie (try swapping the almond flour for hazelnut flour!). You won’t believe how quickly the dough comes together in the food processor, making this one of the easiest cookie recipes ever.
Author Nicki Sizemore

Ingredients

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter , at room temperature
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 cups almond flour
  • ¼ cup cherry jam (or flavor of your choice)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Fit the food processor with the s blade. Add the butter, sugar, cinnamon, salt, almond extract, and egg yolks. Process until smooth, stopping and scraping down the sides occasionally. Add the almond flour, and pulse until combined, 10 to 12 pulses.
  3. Remove the blade, and stir the dough with a rubber spatula. Using two spoons or a mini ice cream scoop, scoop out 1-inch balls of the dough, and place them about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. If you’re using two spoons, roll the dough into balls. Refrigerate the baking sheets for 15 to 30 minutes to chill.
  4. Using a damp finger, make an indentation in the center of each cookie. Fill each indentation with about ¼ to ½ teaspoon of jam. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes, turning the pans 180 degrees halfway through, or until the cookies are golden around the edges. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets set on wire racks, and serve. Storage: The cookies can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.