Pecan Thumbprints

Ingredients 14-1/4 oz. (3 cups plus 2 Tbs.) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. table salt
3/4 lb. (1-1/2 cups) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
6 oz. (1-1/2 cups) pecans, toasted and finely ground in a food processor
3 oz. (1 cup) confectioners’ sugar
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 to 3/4 cup red raspberry preserves with seeds

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and salt to blend. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and pecans on medium speed until very soft and light, about 3 min. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar and vanilla until thoroughly combined, about 1 min.

Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer on low speed, slowly blend in the flour until totally incorporated, about 30 seconds. Using your hands, roll the dough into 1- to 1-1/4-inch balls and set them about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

Press your thumb into the middle of each dough ball to create a well for the preserves. Stir the preserves to loosen and then spoon about 1/2 tsp. into the middle of each dough ball. Bake until the cookies are golden brown, about 20 min.

Let the cookies cool on the sheet for 1 min. before transferring them to a rack to cool. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for three to four days.


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