As soon as I saw the picture of these almond and jam pastries in the latest Sunset Magazine, I took immediate action. A mere two hours after reading the recipe, I had Lovejoy Bakers’ challah in hand, a fresh jar of homemade strawberry jam cracked open, and the necessary butter and almonds out on the counter. In reading the recipe (and salivating over the photo), it seemed like an ideal snack or breakfast – something to eat anytime my blood sugar is low or I need immediate, delicious calories.
These are the kind of pastries I’d easily gravitate towards while out to brunch or at a coffee house. Instead, I can make them at home for a fraction of the cost, and enjoy any leftovers the next day. I chose to cut the recipe in half, knowing that having too many leftover slices of this bread around would interfere with other, more well-rounded meals.
Almond and Jam Pastries
Recipe Source: Sunset Magazine
- 2 cups sliced almonds, divided
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 2/3 cup unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons half-and-half or milk
- About 1/2 cup jam, any flavor
- 8 slices brioche or challah bread, 1 in. thick
- Powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°. Whirl 1 cup almonds with 1/4 cup granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground. Transfer mixture to a bowl.
- Blend butter and remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar in a food processor until smooth. Add salt, egg, and half-and-half and pulse just to blend. Add reserved ground almonds and blend until mixture is smooth.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread about 1 tbsp. jam, then 2 tbsp. almond cream, on each slice of bread (you’ll have almond cream left over). Sprinkle each with about 2 tbsp. sliced almonds.
- Bake until almond cream is golden brown and almonds are toasted, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.