Friday, September 16, 2016

Frosted Lemon Cookies

Frosted Lemon Cookies - made August 19, 2016 from Chocolate Chocolate and More
My dwarf lemon tree forgot about the “dwarf” part of its name and shot up to over 12 feet. It’s my fault it got that high because I wasn’t paying attention and hadn’t realized it had grown so tall. I didn’t know it could get that tall. If that was the dwarf version, what’s the regular tree like? Fortunately, a sharp pair of pruning shears and my lemon tree is back to a modest 7-foot height. Okay, that’s still not very dwarfy but at least it doesn’t look in danger of toppling over into my neighbor’s yard anymore. Did I mention it’s growing crooked too? Yeah, my green thumb isn’t so green.
But my lemon tree is producing lemons. It’s more prolific in the winter time but it does ripen the occasional yellow lemon while there are a (frightening) number of green ones growing larger and larger with every passing day. Expect more lemon-based recipes in the future.
For now, I thought it was a good time to try this recipe for frosted lemon cookies since I had to use up lemons and buttermilk. Normally I don’t do rolled cookies because, let’s face it, they’re a pain. Make the dough, chill it, roll it out to even thickness, cut with cookie shapers, pry off the counter while still trying to keep its shape if you didn’t flour the counter enough, get on the cookie sheet, again without distorting the shape and bake.
I did a fairly decent job with most of that and even was able to remember to time the cookies and take them out at 8 minutes exactly. They even looked done at that point, which is not a long time to bake cookies. But these were thin enough that 8 minutes was sufficient. I let them cool then frosted them. The only thing I changed from both the cookie dough and the frosting is I didn’t use lemon extract. I don’t like the metallic tang of lemon extract so instead I used freshly squeezed lemon juice. It doesn’t impact as much lemon flavor in the cookie as it does in the frosting though.

Hmm, not sure what to say about these cookies. I tried the thickest one as the taste test cookie but maybe I should have tried a thinner cookie. It was a little cakey to me and that cakey texture made it seem dry. It wasn’t overbaked but I didn’t love the texture. The taste was fine and I liked the icing I ended up with but I’m not a fan of (most) cakey cookies. It might also have been a mistake not to use lemon extract in the cookie dough because it really wasn’t that lemony. If it wasn’t for the lemon icing, it wouldn’t have really been a lemon cookie. I think I’m just not a fan of cookies made with buttermilk because they will almost always be cakey cookies.
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
dash of salt

1/4 cup butter, softened
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
2-3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream

  1. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy and light in color. Add egg and lemon extract; beat until combined,
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk until combined. Dough will be soft.
  3. Divide dough into two, wrap each half in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Place chilled dough on well-floured surface. Using a flour-dusted rolling pin, roll out dough to 1/4" thickness. Cut into rounds with cookie cutter. Arrange evenly on baking sheets, Bake for 8 minutes, just until cookies are firm. Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to racks to cool completely.
  6. Make frosting: cream butter in a mixing bowl; slowly add sugar until combined. Add in lemon extract. Beat until combined. Add in cream, one tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency. Frost cooled cookies and let set.

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