While sharing cookie recipes with the rest of the Gluten-Free Ratio Rally (GFreeRally), I came across spritz cookies. You know, the kind that are piped out with a small dollop of jam in the center. What really caught my eye was almond paste was listed as the first ingredient and I just bought two packages of marzipan from IKEA. I also had a new jar of strawberry preserves. Nice, I didn't even have to buy anything to make these cookies. Spritz cookies have a strong association with Christmas. Frankly, it had been so long since I had them that I had forgotten what they tasted like.
Apparently spritz has been shortened from the German spritzgebäck. Per Wikipedia: "Spritzgebäck is a type of German Christmas biscuit made of eggs, butter, sugar, and flour. When made correctly, the cookies are crisp, fragile, somewhat dry, and buttery. The German verb spritzen means to squirt in English. As the name implies, these cookies are made by extruding, or "squirting" the dough with a press fitted with patterned holes or with a cake decorator to which a variety of nozzles may be fitted. Spritzgebäck is a common pastry in Germany and served often during Christmas season, when parents commonly spend afternoons baking with their children for one or two weeks. Traditionally, parents bake Spritzgebäck using their own special recipes, which they pass down to their children."
I brought out a plate of my freshly baked spritz cookies at the tail end of a heart-breaking football game we were watching. And our team was losing miserably. They perked up everyone's spirits immediately. "Erin, THESE are the best cookies you have ever made!" "These remind me of Christmas with chewy jam center." They were liking eating childhood Christmas nostalgia for me. The outside was a thin crust of sugar with a delicate moist almond crumb. And the chewy jam center... irresistible.
The G-Spot hosted this month. The Gluten-Free Ratio Rally is a group of GF bloggers, rallied by Shauna of GlutenFreeGirl.com, where we put our on spin a a culinary standard. These culinary standards are known formulas, ratios, that professionals use. The caveat is that everything is done by weight, since weight is more standardized and much more accurate than measuring by volume. This is the foundation of the GFreeRally as started and explained by Gluten-Free Girl here. The book that we base our ratios is Michael Ruhlman's Ratio. Ruhlman's drop cookie ratio is a 3 parts flour : 2 parts fat : 1 part sugar recipe. Mine turned out to be a little more complex, 2 flour : 2 almond paste: ~2 butter : 1 sugar : ~1 egg, but so worth it!
Ingredients:133 grams almond paste or marzipan
67 grams sugar
1.5 grams (1/4 teaspoon) salt
113 grams (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp.
50 grams (1 large) egg, room temp.
2 grams (1/2 teaspoon) vanilla extract
67 grams sweet (glutinous, but GF) rice flour
67 grams brown rice flour
1/4 cup your choice of jam, preserves, jelly, etc
Directions:Preheat oven to 375F. In a medium bowl, scale and mix together the sweet & brown rice flours. In a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, scale the marzipan, sugar, salt, and butter. Cream on low until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add in the egg and vanilla, and mix until incorporated. With the mixer running at the lowest speed, slowly add in the flour mixture and mix until uniform. Transfer all of the batter into a pipping bag equipped with a large star tip or a gallon plastic food bag with the very tip of the corner cut off. Use a cookie press if you have one. Pipe circles, or any shape you'd like onto a sheet of parchment paper, leaving ample space between. I recommend 12 x 1.5" diameter per sheet. Place a small dollop of jam in the center of each cookie. Bake for about 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are slightly golden brown.
Notes:This recipe makes about 18-20 cookies and can double very easily. If you would like more "body" to these cookies, add another 10-15 grams of each flour to the recipe. Store in an air-tight container. Share with loved ones.
The Sensitive Epicure
Head on over to Caroline's host post to see her amazing Double Chocolate Chip Peppermint Cookies and all the other fantastic recipes brought to you by rally participants this month! Thanks again Caroline for hosting a festive challenge! Also, if you're on Twitter, search #GFreeRally
Amanda | Gluten Free Maui | Simple Shortbread
Amie Valpone | The Healthy Apple | Grapefruit Sugar Cookies
Brooke | B & the boy! | Candy Cane Shortbread
Caleigh | Gluten Free[k] | Mulled Spice Cookies
Caneel | Mama Me Gluten Free | Cardamom Date Cookies
charissa | zest bakery | Coconut Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Caroline | The G-Spot | Double Chocolate Chip Peppermint Cookies
Claire | Gluten Freedom | Chai Latte Cashew Cookies
Erin | The Sensitive Epicure | Spritz Cookies with Jam
gretchen | kumquat | Classic Sugar Cookies
Irvin | Eat the Love | Apple Brown Butter Bay Leaf Spice Cookies
Jean | Gluten Free Doctor Recipes | Reindeer Cookies
Jenn | Jenn Cuisine | Basler Brunsli
Jonathan| The Canary Files | Vegan Salted Oatmeal Cherry Cookies
Karen | Cooking Gluten Free! | Mexican Wedding Cakes
Lisa from Gluten Free Canteen | Molasses Rum Raisin Cookies
Mary Fran | frannycakes | Pinwheel Cookies
Meaghan | The Wicked Good Vegan | Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
Meredith | Gluten Free Betty | Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
Morri | Meals With Morri| Stevia Sweetened & Grain-Free Thumbprint Cookies with Apricot Preserves
Pete & Kelli | No Gluten, No Problem| Belgian Speculaas Cookies
Rachel | The Crispy Cook | Melomakarona
Shauna | The Gluten-Free Girl & Chef | Soft Molasses Cookies
Silvana Nardone | Silvana's Kitchen | Old-School Italian Jam-Filled Hazelnut Cookies
T.R. | No One Likes Crumbley Cookies | Cinnamon Lemon Cookies
Tara | A Baking Life | Walnut Shortbread