Sunday, February 9, 2014

Frosted Lemon Sugar Cookies

Frosted Lemon Sugar Cookies - made dough January 24, 2014, baked on February 2, 2014 from Lulu the Baker
Sometimes it's annoying when I have a carton of milk to use up and I keep finding recipes that only use a tablespoon of it. On the flip side it's also annoying to find recipes that only use 1 tablespoon of milk and I have none in the house and don't want to buy a carton just to use 1 tablespoon (First World problem). I decided I'd rather be annoyed by the first instance than the second one because the first scenario means I already have the milk on hand and I can keep searching for more recipes that use it. Don't worry if you didn't follow that logic, I'm just thinking out loud.
This recipe used lemons, milk and cream cheese, all ingredients I had in abundance. It had the added advantage that I could make the dough when I had a spare 15 minutes, freeze it then bake it off and make the frosting when I had more time. Like during this year's very lopsided, uninteresting Super Bowl game where I had only the commercials to entertain me.
These make good "tea" cookies, i.e. if you want something cute and small to serve at an afternoon tea. The texture of the cookie was a cross between a butter cookie and a sugar cookie, halfway between cakey and chewy at the same time. The frosting dresses these cookies up a bit. They weren't as lemony as I expected and I think that was because the cream cheese in the frosting competed with the tang of the lemon. If you want it more lemony, I recommended increasing the amount of zest in the cookie dough and possibly not doing a cream cheese frosting but a pure lemon royal icing instead.
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup crisco
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 Tablespoon milk
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup butter, softened
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 pound powdered sugar
pinch of salt
fresh lemon juice

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter, crisco, and sugar until fluffy. Add vanilla, egg, and lemon zest; mix. 
  2. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt, and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to mixer and combine. Add milk and lemon juice, and stir until completely incorporated. 
  3. Roll dough into tablespoon-sized balls and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until cookies are just beginning to turn golden on the edges. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
  4. To make the frosting, beat butter and cream cheese until smooth and well mixed. Add vanilla. Add powdered sugar and salt. Stir. Mix in fresh lemon juice until the frosting reaches a spreadable consistency.

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