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Food Bytes PG Cookbook The Food Chain
Kitchen Mailbox Countdown to Dinner Dining

These cookies are Christmas for me. My mom, who was born in Czechoslovakia, pronounces the Czech name "su-shen-kee," but to me they're "the ones with the jam in the middle." After cutting the cookies into a shape (bells, hearts, circles and diamonds), we take a thimble and put a hole in the middle of half of them before baking. After the baking, we spread jam on the ones that had no hole and place a "thimbled" one of the same shape on top, to make a sort of "cookie-jelly sandwich." The red jam shows through, adding to the holiday spirit, and we sprinkle confectioners' sugar over them like snow to complete the process. ( I'd bake and eat the little leftover thimble cutouts, leaving no room for dinner.)

4 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups butter (softened)
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
Raspberry jam (with seeds)

Sift flour with sugar onto a pastry board. Cut in butter. Add eggs and vanilla and work into a smooth dough. Add flour as necessary to avoid stickiness. Form three to four balls from the dough. With each ball, roll out 1/8 to 3/16 inch thick on a floured surface. Cut into desired shapes, and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for about 10 minutes.

-- Adapted from "The Czechoslovak Cookbook" by Joza Brizova; submitted by Caroline Abels, PG staff writer

Originally published on Sunday, December 13, 1998

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