The recipe, borrowed from Gourmet magazine’s December 2007 issue, is one that I’d cut out before the move and happily rediscovered in time for a round of holiday baking. However, any sugar cookie or thumbprint recipe would do in place of the dough, it’s more a matter of shaping and filling. They’re a bit of a pain to make, but so pretty and tasty that it’s worthwhile!
Adapted slightly from the original recipe, printed in Gourmet magazine
2-1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
2 sticks butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 T seedless strawberry or raspberry jam (for the red color)
2 T peach or apricot jam, any pieces of fruit strained out (for the yellow color)
2 T seedless blackberry, black raspberry or loganberry jam (for the blacky-purple color)
Mix butter and sugar until fluffy, then add egg and vanilla to incorporate. Add in salt and flour and stir just to combine. Cover in plastic and refrigerate an hour or until chilled.
Place each jam in a separate small bowl and mix up with a fork to loosen. Set a small spoon (if you have baby spoons, these work well) in each. You’ll only need 1/8 tsp of jam in each well of the cookie.
Set oven temperature at 350º and spray or parchment-line baking sheets. Roll tiny balls, about the size of the tip of your pinky finger, into sets of three and place together onto the baking sheet. Press gently down to flatten slightly into a three-leafed clover shape, then poke the center of each ball with the end of a wooden spoon to make a small well. Continue forming cookies to fill the pan. They don’t spread much when baked, so they can be placed pretty close together, about 1″ of space is needed.
Pick one type of jam and fill one well of each cookie with it, working through the whole pan with one jam and then moving on to the next jam. This is time-consuming when done with spoons, so if you have a set of small frosting tips it goes a little faster and neater. (These pictures are from my third pan, by which time I got the hang of it and they looked prettier.)
Bake 12-15 minutes, depending on your oven, until the bottoms are slightly browned. Remove from oven and let set on the tray another 3-4 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
Makes 3 dozen cookies.