Friday, September 25, 2015

Jam Fans

In a last gasp of summer, I discovered I still had a small amount of fresh plum compote on hand, so I set out to make some cookies.  Among an old stack of recipes, I found these little gems calling out for my attention.  They fit the bill perfectly.

Jam Fans are little shaped pastries made from a simple dough that includes a bit of cream cheese and lemon zest to perk it up.  I reduced the sugar as they were a bit too sweet for me but the cookies are not overly rich or heavy.  Perfect when you want just a little something.   

The finished cookies are buttery and crisp with just a nibble of fruit.  Use your favorite jam or a mix of your favorites for a jeweled platter.  They’ll disappear quickly.  I advise you to make sure you squirrel away a few for yourself.

Bench notes:
- When the cookies are stored in an airtight container, they will soften, so I made a half recipe of 22 cookies.  For the full recipe, see the original recipe, Lemon Blueberry Fans.
- Resist the temptation to use more than a scant 1/2 teaspoon of jam on each cookie.  Any more than that and it tends to spill out as it bakes.
- If your dough cracks a bit as you fold it over, not to worry.  Just pinch it together to seal it.
- These are baked at a higher temperature so watch them closely to prevent over browning.

Jam Fans
Makes 22 cookies

1 1/4 cups (6 1/4 oz) flour             
1 tablespoon (9 grams) cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt   
4 oz (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter @ room temperature                                              
1 1/2 oz cream cheese @ room temperature
1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz) sugar   [I used 1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz) sugar]    
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest                   
1/2 teaspoon vanilla                                                          
1/3 cup jam or preserves  

Whisk together flour, cornstarch and salt.  Set aside.

Cream softened butter, cream cheese and sugar together until light and fluffy. Scrape down the bowl.  Mix in lemon zest and vanilla.  Add flour mixture and blend thoroughly.  Place the dough on a piece of plastic wrap.  Cover it with another piece of plastic wrap and roll it out to an 1/8" thickness.  Place on a baking sheet and chill for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.   Line baking sheets with parchment or silpats.

Cut out cookies using a round 2 1/2” cookie cutter.  Place the rounds 1” apart on the prepared baking sheets.

Spoon 1/2 teaspoon jam onto the center of each cookie.  Shape into fans by lifting the opposite sides of each circle up over the jam and pinching them together about 2/3 of the way, forming a point at one end.

Bake until the bottom edges are lightly browned, about 8 - 10 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

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