Thursday, July 16, 2009

Lemon Drop Cookies

Alot of my recipes don't turn out exactly as planned. Sometimes cookies are crispy when I thought they'd be chewy, sometimes cupcakes are dense when I thought they'd be light, and sometimes brownies are cakey when I thought they'd be fudge-y.

Thus is the curse of baking, when sampling along the way doesn't tell you much about the finished product. But these cookies were exactly what I expected - and was hoping for. They were sweet and refreshing and just the right amount of chewy. The quick roll in sugar before baking made the outside just a little crispy. They even spread how I wanted and sunk a little in the middle the way I like.
If only everything in life could come out this well.

Though my love for chocolate and peanut butter and all things fudgy remains, sometimes I like a more light, sweet taste. Lemon is the perfect choice. This recipe called for the zest of three lemons, and I got right to work.
I know, I know, no microplane zester for me. But I managed. And without any scraped knuckles as well. And ten vigorous minutes of zesting later I had three naked lemons and a whole lot of lemon rind. Mission Accomplished.
After zesting comes juicing of course, and this cute little juicer worked perfectly, and even had a little barrier to catch the seeds.
Next step in the recipe called for me to put the sugar and zest in the food processor and mix together. Being entirely too lazy to bring out the food processor at that moment, instead I used my immersion blender in a bowl. Would have been easier if I used a bigger bowl, but it worked just the same. Half this mixture was used in the batter and the rest was for rolling the dough in before baking. I had way too much at the end, so you could definitely cut down on it.
Rolling the dough balls went pretty well - sometimes I find doughs too sticky to form properly into round balls - not the case here.
Finally, a whole tray done, and in the oven.
And baked! The smell was delicious - the whole kitchen was lemony fresh. And not the pledge kind.
This is another recipe that called for egg yolks, and left me with three egg whites at the end.
No meringues for me this time...stay tuned to find out how I used them!

Tip of the Day: One large lemon will yield about 3 to 4 tablespoons of lemon juice, and 2 to 3 teaspoons of lemon zest.

(via Oh Fransson)

1 stick unsalted butter
¼ Cup Shortening
¼ Cup Cream Cheese
3 Cups Granulated Sugar
Zest of 3 Lemons
3 Egg Yolks
1 tbsp Lemon Juice
½ tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cream of Tartar
Dash of Salt
1¾ Cups Flour

Cream together butter, shortening and cream cheese until smooth.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine granulated sugar and lemon zest.
Add two cups of the lemon sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt to the bowl and mix well.
Add eggs yolks, lemon juice and vanilla and beat to combine.
Gradually mix in flour.
Roll dough into 1” balls, then roll in remaining sugar.
Bake 12 – 14 minutes on 300 F until just barely browned

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