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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Linzertorte- Austrian Jam Tart

Most of my recipes for the holidays have some sort of family history. Either it's something my mom made when I was a child, or something that a relative would bring to the table every year.

The Linzertorte, however, is an exception. I have no idea when and why I started to make it, but I absolutely adore this dessert.

A Linzertorte is actually an Austrian dessert named after a city in Austria. It's a super easy tart to make because the pastry is pressed into the tart pan instead of rolled and the filling is jam. It's not too sweet but just sweet enough because of the jam, and the subtle spices, hint of lemon and nuttiness make it a perfect holiday dessert (or if you are my husband, you eat it for breakfast too!).

The traditional filling is raspberry jam, but I love using wild blueberry or apricot. Try it with pre-made jam or with your own homemade jam. The better quality jam, the better the tart will be.

I use a 9" round tart pan with a removable base. This makes it incredibly easy to get the tart out of the pan and onto a serving dish.
Makes 1- 9" Round Tart with Lattice Top

1 cup Butter, room temperature
1/2 cup Brown Sugar, packed
1 Large Egg
1 tsp Vanilla
2/3 cup Ground Almonds
2 1/2 cups Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
Zest of 1/2 Lemon (optional)

1 1/2 cups Jam of your choice (Seedless Raspberry is traditional)

In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, mix together almonds, flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon (and lemon zest if using). Add to butter mixture and mix just until combined.

Divide the dough in two, and form 1 half into a disc. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill for about 30 minutes.

With the other half of the dough, press it into the tart pan and up the sides of the pan. Chill for 30 minutes until firm. After chilling, spread the jam over the bottom of the tart. Roll out the chilled disc of dough and cut into strips. Use the strips to make a lattice pattern on top of the tart. Press the ends of the lattice onto the sides of the tart. Chill the tart for another 30 minutes or until you are ready to bake. (Make ahead tip: Freeze the tart at this point. Bake it directly out of the freezer).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for about 40 minutes until brown. Let cool and dust with icing sugar before serving.

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