Friendship Cookies

For a truly multicultural dessert, make all three shades of cookie dough.

Friendship Cookies
Servings: 12 Yield: 30 cookies Chill 2 hrs in refrigerator Bake 350°F 17 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups slivered almonds
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 sticks butter (1-1/2 cups), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, divided
  • Hard red candies, such as Life Savers
  • Pink decorating icing
  • Sprinkles

Make It

1. In food processor, grind almonds to fine crumbs. Add flour and cinnamon, and pulse to blend. In mixer bowl, combine butter and sugar, and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla. With mixer on low speed, beat in flour mixture until well combined. Remove 1/3 of dough, gather into a ball, and flatten into a disk. Place between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Refrigerate until firm, 2 hours to 3 days. Add 1 tablespoon cocoa powder to remaining dough in mixer, beating to blend. Remove 1/2 of remaining dough, and roll and refrigerate as before. Add 2 tablespoons cocoa powder to remaining dough in mixer, beating to combine. Roll and refrigerate as before.

2. Place candies in a heavy plastic bag. Using a hammer or heavy pan, crush into small pieces.

3. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with foil. Roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a hand-shaped cookie cutter, cut out as many hands as possible. Transfer to foil-lined baking sheet, 1 inch apart. Using a small heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut a heart from palm of each hand. Bake 13 minutes.

4. Remove cookies from oven, and spoon crushed candies into hearts, filling slightly above cookie tops. Bake 4 minutes more, or until candies have melted. Let cookies cool completely on baking sheet, then peel from foil. Reroll scraps and repeat with remaining dough. Pipe rings on fingers using decorating icing, and attach sprinkles for jewels.