Italian Hearts


* 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
* 1/8 teaspoon salt
* 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
* 1 lemon, grated zest of
* 3/4 cup butter, cut up
* 1 large egg
* 2 large egg yolks
* 1/2 cup raspberry preserves
* 1/4 cup Alchermes or cherry liqueur
* 1 cup confectioners' sugar


Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and lemon zest.

Use a pastry blender to cut in the butter until the mixture resembles fine crumbs.

Add the egg and egg yolks, beating until just blended. Stir to form a smooth dough.

Press the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter four cookie sheets.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of 1/4 inch.

Use a 2-inch heart cookie cutter to cut out the cookies. Cut out the centers from half the cookies with an apple corer. Gather the dough scraps, re-roll, and continue cutting out cookies until all the dough is used.

Use a spatula to transfer the cookies to the prepared cookie sheets, placing them 1 inch apart.

Bake, one sheet at a time, for 8-10 minutes, or until just golden at the edges.

Transfer to racks and let cool completely.

Heat the raspberry preserves in a small pan over low heat until liquid.

Spread the whole cookies with the preserves.

Place the liqueur in a small bowl and the confectioners' sugar in a separate bowl.

Dip the holed cookies first in the liqueur, then in the confectioners' sugar.

Place the holed cookies on top of the cookies spread with preserves.

Let set before serving.






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