My Mother’s Famous Linzertorte Recipe
When I turned 21, my mother Ruth Schachter (nee Nisse) sent me a file of her favourite recipes that she had carefully typed out on her manual typewriter. I treasure and still have this lovely collection. In it, there were three versions of this wonderful European dessert: a nut crusted, lattice-topped tart filled with raspberry jam. I eventually combined all three recipes and came up with one that even my mother admits is tops. Both my daughters bake this – to rave reviews. Serve in narrow wedges – this is rich and a little goes a long way – with a spoonful of vanilla ice cream, thickened yogurt or whipped cream. It is a winner! Notes: I give you a choice in size and shape of pan; both will work but I prefer an 8-inch (20 cm) fluted pan as the bottom crust is a bit thicker and the fluted edge is attractive. It should be a good quality non-stick springform pan with a removable rim. Check near the end of the baking time for doneness; it will depend on your pan, the oven etc. The crust should be a burnished brown – not too light, not too dark.
1¼ cups (6 oz/175 g) whole unblanched almonds, skins on
¾ cup butter, at room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
2 egg yolks (reserve 1 white)
1 tsp grated lemon rind
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch ground cloves
About 1 cup good quality raspberry jam
Icing sugar for dusting
In food processor, chop almonds, pulsing with on/off motion, until they resemble fine crumbs.
In standing mixer or in large bowl using electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, lemon rind and lemon juice. Mix until smooth.
In separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, cinnamon, cloves and chopped almonds. Stir into butter mixture to form soft dough. Gather dough into ball with floured hands (it will be sticky), wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. Bring to room temperature about 1 hour before using.
Preheat oven to 350F.
With floured hands on floured surface, evenly pat two-thirds of dough onto bottom and about 1 ¼ inches up sides of a 8-inch (20 cm) or 9-inch (23 cm) springform pan or fluted flan ring with removable bottom. Carefully spread jam over dough.
On floured surface, roll remaining dough into circle about ¼ inch thick. Cut into strips and arrange in lattice on top of jam, pressing edges into edge of torte. (If strips break, simply press them back together.)
In small bowl, lightly beat reserved egg white. Brush strips and edges of torte with egg white.
Bake in centre of oven about 40 to 45 minutes or until crust is well browned and jam is bubbling. Cool completely in pan on rack. Remove sides of pan. Dust with icing sugar by rubbing through sieve with spoon.
Makes 8 to 10 servings.