We've finally reached the end of the 12 Cookies of Christmas, and although I can use the extra time for the 1,001 other things that need tending to, I'm a little sorry it's over. There's nothing like the necessity of baking every day to take the pressure off of mastering a new technique or working with an unfamiliar recipe. It's been a lot of fun, and a lot of cookies, I'm especially grateful for the chance I had to get to know a truly talented and creative group of fellow food bloggers. Thanks Andrea, of Andrea's Recipes, for pulling all this together! And thanks to Claire of The Barefoot Kitchen, Kelly of Sass & Veracity, Courtney of Coco Cooks, Jerry of Cooking by the Seat of My Pants, and Judy of No Fear Entertaining for making it such a great experience. Same time next year?
For my final cookie of the season, I've chosen the Lemon Thins. I've had rich and chewy, nutty, sticky, and gooey, and now all I want is the simplicity of a crisp, pretty lemon cookie. I'm happy to report that these deliver ~ with one significant modification.
Unlike the recipe introduction suggests, I found that these were not in the least bit "brightly sour." Nor did they "pack a punch of citrus flavor." After my test batch revealed these to be disappointly subtle in this regard, I added a half teaspoon of lemon extract and a few drops of lemon flavoring oil (Oetker's). That brightened things up considerably, but without the addition of lemon juice, the cookies still are not sour.
The texture of these cookies is crisp and delicate, making them a perfect cookie for teatime. I'd like to pair them with some fresh ginger ice cream, and it wouldn't be a bad idea at all to sandwich these with a bit of raspberry buttercream. Something I plan to keep in mind for the future.
~Adapted from Gourmet magazine, April 1976, available online here
- 2 eggs
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I used 1/4 teaspoon vanilla plus 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract)
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened (I used salted)
- 2/3 cup flour
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or butter it. Beat eggs with sugar and extract(s) for 3 to 4 minutes until thick and lemon yellow. Add lemon zest.
- In another bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy.
- Add butter to egg mixture a little at a time, alternating with flour.
- Drop the dough by teaspoons (or use my method, below) about 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheet. Flatten mounds with an offset spatula dipped in ice water.
- Bake cookies at 400 degrees F for about 5 minutes or until the edges are browned. Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet for a minute, then remove them to a rack to cool fully. Place in an airtight container once they are completely cool.