If ever our staff at AHIM is on a diet, we are in trouble with the very talented professional baker as part of our team. Sandi Edelson has trained in the U.S., France and Italy to cultivate her culinary skill and we get lucky to taste-test her recipes at the office. We guarantee you will love whatever Sandi has created in her kitchen. And – because when we say we love to share expert home advice with our readers, we mean it – today we're going to share this delicious "How To" with you, from expert baker Sandi.
Valentine’s Day Austrian Linzer Torte
Perfect for your Valentine who can't tolerate – or just doesn't prefer – chocolate treats.
This is surprisingly easy to make and just requires a fluted pan with a removable bottom. Buttery goodness, perfumed with almonds and a delicious fruit filling. Here’s the recipe…
2 ½ sticks softened unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ ground cloves (optional)
½ tsp. table salt
1 ½ tsp. grated lemon rind (This is technically optional but highly recommended since it adds dimension and balance to the buttery crust)
1 ¼ cups ground blanched almonds (Bob’s Red Mill brand is readily available in supermarkets).
¾ cup fruit preserves of your choice (high quality strawberry, seedless raspberry or apricot work well)
Put the flour in a medium sized bowl and with a wire whisk, stir in the cinnamon, salt and cloves until blended. (Whisking is easier than sifting dry ingredients together).
In a large bowl, cream the butter and beat in the sugar, a ¼ cup at a time. Add eggs, one at a time,beating well after each one. Stir in the lemon rind. Stir in the dry ingredients, avoiding overbeating.
Add the ground almonds.
Spread half of the mixture in the bottom of either a 9” or 10” fluted tart pan with removable bottom. In either case, you will have some leftover dough but that’s ok – you can make little cookies with the extra.
Spread with a big spoon or, a clean plastic spackle knife works well – (hey, we are a home improvement magazine!) Spread preserves on top, leaving a half inch border.
Transfer remaining dough to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2” tip. Pipe the dough across the top of the torte in a lattice pattern, spaced about 2” apart. Then pipe around the edge of the pan.
Bake – 350 degrees for about 35-40 minutes until crust is golden. Let cool on a rack and remove the rim of the pan. Sift confectioners sugar over the torte. Enjoy!