My husband picked up one of these cookies from the cooling rack and took a bite. I was sitting in the other room and knew before I saw his face crinkle in surprise and disapproval that he hadn’t paid attention when I told him earlier that these were savory cookies and not the type he would enjoy after dinner. His tastebuds were expecting sweet and that is not what he got at all.
I would recommend holding the milk on these cookies. These bites are meant to be enjoyed with a cocktail or a glass of wine. I took my favorite thumbprint cookie recipe and gave it a savory makeover. I used almond meal and spelt flour to give the cookies a nutty base and to complement the two cheeses I added to the mix. And to give them an extra kick I snuck in a little cayenne pepper to balance out the sweetness of the fig jam I topped them with.
Really, these cookies are a cheese board in one bite. Use your favorite cheese and jam to create your own salty-sweet flavor combination. Just make sure to leave them out of the dessert tray and your guests will be happy.
- ¾ cup almond meal
- 1 cup spelt flour (all purpose would be fine)
- 1 stick (8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup firmly packed grated cheese (I used a combination Parmigiano and Gouda)
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- Fig jam (or your jam of choice)
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper or silicone mat.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, almond meal, cayenne pepper, salt and grated cheese. Set aside.
- Using a hand mixer, whip the butter in a another bowl until it's light and fluffy, about three minutes. Gradually add the dry mixture and beat on low speed just until combined.
- Take a spoonful-sized piece of dough and roll between your palms to form a ball. Place each ball two inches apart on the baking sheet. Using your thumb or ½ teaspoon measuring spoon, press the center of the ball to create a well.
- Bake for about 15 minutes or when the cookies are just slightly colored. Rotate the pan halfway through the baking time and check for doneness at the 12 minute mark.
- While the cookies bake, heat up about ½ cup of jam on the stovetop or microwave.
- Pull the cookies out of the oven and leave them on the baking pan for two to three minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
- Spoon a small amount of jam on top of each cookie. Cool and enjoy. These will keep for two to three days in a sealed container but best enjoyed the same day.