Walnut Jam Thumbprints

thumbprintThese cookies are great in winter. You can use any kind of jam in them, but I think a tart flavor is better to contrast with the sweet cookie. Favorites are raspberry and cassis jam. I got this recipe from my mom, but you can find it all over on the Internet.

113g (1/2 cup) butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg, separated
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1/4 cup jam


Preheat oven to 180C/350F.

Beat butter and sugar. Add egg yolk and vanilla and mix well. Add the flour and salt and mix to combine.

Beat the reserved egg white. Roll cookie dough into 1-inch (2.5cm) balls. Dip the cookies into the egg white, and roll in the chopped walnuts.

With one finger or a small spoon, make an indentation in the top of each ball. Fill with about 1/4 tsp of jam.

Bake cookies for about 12 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cool on the cookie sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.


Almond Thumbprints

These cookies are very delicate and have a great almond flavor. You can use any flavor of jam for the middle. My favorite is raspberry, but raspberry jam is hard to find in Japan, so I have used blueberry, mixed berry, and cassis with success.

227g (1 cup) butter
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 cups flour
1/3 cup jam (raspberry or other – see notes)

1 cup powdered sugar
2-3 tsp water
1-1/2 tsp almond extract


Cream butter and sugar. Add almond extract and mix well. Finally, add flour and mix until combined.

If dough is soft, refrigerate about 1 hour or until firm.

Roll dough into 1″ (2.5cm) balls and use your thumb or the back of a spoon to make a hole in the center of each. Fill the holes with a small amount of jam.

Bake cookies for 14-18 minutes at 180C/350F.

Let cookies cool completely before glazing. Mix the powdered sugar, water, and almond extract and drizzle over cookies. Let sit for 30 minutes or so until the glaze sets.