Jarlsberg Thumbprint Cookies with Fig-Pepper Spread

1 cup (2 sticks)Butter, softened
2 largeEgg yolks
2 cups All-purpose flour
3 cups (12 ounces)Shredded Jarlsberg cheese
1 cupGrated fresh Parmesan cheesee
1 ½ cupsFinely chopped toasted pecans or unbleached almonds
¾ cupFinely chopped, stemmed Valley Fig Growers Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid Calimyrna or Mission Figs
½ cupValley Fig Growers Orchard Choice Fig Spreads--Organic Mission, California Orange, Balsamic Pepper, or Port Wine

 

Preheat oven to 350.

Place butter in large bowl. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. Beat in egg yolks. On low speed, gradually beat in flour.

Stir in Jarlsberg, parmesan and nuts.

Divide dough into 4 equal portions. Wrap 3 in wax paper or plastic wrap and chill.

On work surface, form remaining portion of dough into 10 (1 1/2-inch) balls. Place balls, 1 1/2-inches apart, on ungreased baking sheet. With thumb or back of wooden spoon, make 1/2-inch indentation in center of each cookie.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown. If needed, press back of teaspoon into cookies while warm to re-form indentations.

Remove cookies to wire rack to cool. Repeat shaping and baking with remaining dough.

In small bowl, stir together figs and fig spread. Fill each cookie with about 1 teaspoon of the mixture.

Make ahead note:
Dough can be prepared 1 to 2 days ahead. Form dough into 1 1/2-inch cylinder, wrap airtight and chill or freeze for longer storage. Baked cookies can be stored unfilled, in airtight container for 2 days or frozen. To re-crisp, place on baking sheet in 350 oven for 2 to 4 minutes. Cool. Fill with fig-pepper spread as directed.


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