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Viennese Punch Cookies

Blog post by Abby.

I don’t usually do this…when I was browsing the cookie section of The Modern Baker to pick my “official” blogging recipes, I picked this one just for the picture: a beautiful shiny pink top, with a chocolately brown layer in the middle, and a shortbread-looking cookie on the bottom. These Viennese punch cookies are so pretty!
If I’d read more carefully, I probably wouldn’t have chosen them; they are not child-friendly, with a significant amount of rum in both the filling and the icing. And the brown layer is not a chocolate filling.
Nevertheless, while mine didn’t look as lovely as the ones in the book, these were fun to make!
The bottom cookie layer is delicious, made with butter, confectioner’s sugar, ground almonds, and flour. I struggled a bit with the dough, finding it too sticky to roll out, but it was easy to just use my fingers to press it into the appropriate thickness. After cutting out the cookies (I used a 1 1/2″ round cutter and got 10 sandwiches from a half-recipe), the remainder of the dough is also baked. These cookie scraps are ground and used with apricot preserves, a tiny bit of chocolate, orange and lemon zests, and rum to create the filling. Finally an icing is applied: warmed confectioner’s sugar, rum, water, and food coloring. (If my frosting looks a little runny, it’s because I added a little extra water when I was stirring, forgetting that the sugar would melt when the filling was heated.)

I took these to our friends’ house for a barbecue this evening, and the adults enjoyed them. (I made TWD Hungarian shortbread for the kiddos; post coming on May 1.)

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