Merry Berry Linzer Torte
This Merry Berry Linzer Torte has a nutty warmth with a festive cheer (sounds like I’m describing my family gatherings at the holidays)! I named my recipe after Mary Berry, one of my baking heroes. The almond crust is flavored with cardamom and the filling is sweet strawberry jam. I used Bonne Maman’s Strawberry Preserves, however any berry jam will do.
1 ½ cups flour
1 ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon zest
10 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 cups almond flour or finely ground almonds
2/3 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon water
½ cup sliced almonds
1 cup strawberry jam
Preheat oven to 400° Fahrenheit.
Grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan or 10-inch tart pan.
Combine the flour, cardamom, salt and lemon zest in a large bowl or mixer bowl.
Add the soft butter; beat until well mixed.
Add the almond flour and sugar; beat until blended.
In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks and water together; add it to the flour mixture. Beat until the dough looks like soft bread crumbs. You know the dough is ready when you grab a fist full and it holds together. Add more water if needed.
Shape dough into a log. Divide in two pieces: a larger piece that is 2/3 of the log and a smaller piece that is a 1/3 portion. Wrap the smaller piece in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge.
Roll the larger piece to be wider in diameter than your pan and ½-¾ inch thick. Place the dough in the bottom of the pan and mold to the sides. Trim edges even to the tart pan. For a cake pan, pat the dough about 1 ½ inch up the sides then trim an even edge.
Lightly press the sliced almonds around the top of the edges of the dough.
Use a fork to dot the bottom of the crust.
Bake for 10-12 minutes until crust dries out slightly and begins to change color.
Cool the bottom crust. When you can touch the warm pan, it helps to put the bottom crust in the fridge to give it a good chill.
Turn down the oven to 350° Fahrenheit.
Roll out the smaller piece of dough to ½-¾ inch thick. Cut out festive shapes using cookie cutters. Place the cut outs on a flat cookie sheet and chill in the fridge until the bottom crust has cooled completely.
Spread the jam on the bottom crust once it is cool. Place the cut outs on top of the jam.
Bake for 35-40 minutes at 350° Fahrenheit. The torte is done when the jam is bubbling and the crusts are golden brown. If the almond edges brown early, line the edges with aluminum foil.
Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream or ice cream. Slice thin wedges.