Lemons: Lemon Cookies & Lemon-Drop Cupcakes

Of all the fruits that I’ve encountered, I have to say, the lemon is the prettiest and most versatile. I love the look of a lemon and I love its fragrance. I love that it exudes that wonderful oily substance that I don’t bother washing off of my hands. The fact that the entire fruit has uses appeals to me especially. In fact I see more and more professional chefs adding lemon zest to all kinds of dishes.

Here’s what I use lemons for: in cakes and icings, in lemon-garlic chicken, as a deodorizer, in a bowl as a centerpiece, and, of course, for lemon aide.

Lemon Cookies

It makes a difference and I can taste it, when a recipe calls for lemon juice, squeeze your lemons!
I made these cookies using Michael McCarty’s recipe.

Now, one of the things I look for when baking is a straight-forward recipe with uncomplicated ingredients (unless I’m in the mood for a challenge) but this recipe made me a little skeptical. It does not require much sugar nor does it contain any baking powder.

I tasted them after cooling but the flavor was so so. Not really good enough to give away…
I piled them into a zip-lock bag and put them in the freezer. Something about the cold temperature heightened their flavor! Although they were hard they were pleasingly crunchy and refreshingly tastier! Excellent for dunking!

I freeze biscotti when I make a trip to Little Italy in the Bronx and do not thaw before eating. They’re really good this way!
I may give this recipe another go, or perhaps a lemon biscotti-type of cookie. Yes, that sounds better.

Michael McCarty’s recipe for Lemon Cookies
1 C butter (2 sticks)
½ C sugar
1 egg yolk
¼ C lemon juice
1 ½ t vanilla
1/8 t salt
2 C flour
1 t grated lemon

¼ C confectioners’ sugar
Cream butter & sugar. Add egg, lemon juice, & vanilla. Add flour & salt. Add zest. Bake at 350 degrees. Dust with confectioners’ sugar.

Lemon-Drop Cupcakes

This recipe actually called for limes but I had all these lemons so I substituted. I paired the cake with a lemony icing of which only a tiny amount was needed since the flavor was so intense! A colleague commented that any more icing would have ruined it for her and I agreed.
The two recipes together made a tangy lemony cup cake! Yum!


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