Linzer Torte

My wife is Austrian, so obviously I had to attempt to make a Linzer torte. This is an Austrian torte, originating from the city of Linz. It is a crumbly pastry with jam and nuts, usually hazelnuts but I used almonds. The jam can be redcurrant, raspberry or apricot. The cake is usually covered by a lattice of dough strips. The torte is a holiday classic around Christmas and thought to be one of the oldest cakes in the world. Enjoy!

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Dough

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 ground clove

¼ tsp of salt

1 stick of cold unsalted butter

½ cup of granulated sugar

½ tsp of lemon zest

Filling

2 cups seedless raspberry jam

½ cup of ground slivered almonds

Glaze

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon water

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Butter 1 square cake pan then line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper cut to fit.

In a food processor add 2 cups of flour, salt, sugar and butter. The butter should be cold and cut into small cubes. Pulse with mixture 10-12 times. Now add the cinnamon, clove and lemon zest and pulse 3-4 times. Then add 1/2 cup of the water and mix till it forms a dough ball. Place the dough into saran wrap and cool in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Then process the almonds till ground and put aside.

After 30 min divide the dough roughly ¾ and ¼ portions. Roll out the ¾ portion of the dough to fit the inside of the square pan. Press evenly and firmly over the bottoms and then about 1 inch up the sides with your fingers.

Roll the remaining ¼ portion of dough between two pieces of waxed paper and then cut to make strips for the lattice.

Now sprinkle the ground almonds over the dough in the pan. Add the raspberry jam to cover the dough. Arrange strips crisscrossing them on an angle to make a lattice top with diamond-shaped openings. I alternated three in each direction to weave the lattice.

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To add a little finish, mix egg yolk and water. Brush it all over lattice top and border. Sprinkle with almonds, if desired. Bake the torte for 45 to 60 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Then use a small, sharp knife and cut into squares. Add powdered sugar if desired.

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