It's time for this month's Secret Recipe Club! The Secret Recipe Club is a group of food bloggers who secretly make one of someone else's dishes and post them all on the same day at the same time. It's really fun, choosing a recipe to make, making the recipe, then reading about everyone else's recipes. It's a great way to "meet" other bloggers and check out some great blogs that you never knew about before.
This month I was assigned the blog Cookin' Mimi written by Micha. Micha is a Southern California gal who has been cooking all her life. She has a great collection of recipes. Her Cheddar Potato Bites certainly caught my eye. How can you go wrong with cheese and potatoes? Yum. I was planning a fun picnic dinner for my family, so I wanted something kind of picnic-y. We have started doing a "Family Fun Night" one night each week and that week we were going to an outdoor concert. I thought it would be fun to eat a picnic dinner there, so I planned for egg salad sandwiches (my girls love them), chips, and bottled water. We were missing something. . . ah yes, dessert! I perused Micha's dessert offerings and came across her Lemon Iced Butter Cookies. Butter cookies? I had never made butter cookies before but I was very intrigued by the fact that they did not contain eggs. I don't think I've ever made cookies that didn't require eggs. But they sounded absolutely divine so I couldn't wait to try them. They were perfect for our picnic.
Iced Lemon Butter Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
½ cup + 2 tbsp sugar
½ tsp salt
2 tsp + 2½ tbsp lemon juice, divided
Zest of 1 lemon
2 cups flour
2¼ cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350°.
In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and the sugar. Mix in the salt, 2 tsp lemon juice, and lemon zest. Gently fold in the flour.
Form cookies by rolling 2 tbsp dough into a ball. Place balls on a cookie sheet, leaving room in between for them to spread. Dip the bottom of a glass into a bit of flour and use the glass to slightly flatten the dough balls. Don’t smoosh them all the way down; just flatten them slightly.
Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges just barely begin to brown. Remove from the oven and let cookies cool for at least 10 minutes on the baking sheet. Transfer them to parchment paper and let them cool completely before icing.
For the icing, stir together the powdered sugar and the remaining 2½ tbsp lemon juice. The icing should be thick, but if it is too thick, thin it out with a little more lemon juice or water. Smooth the icing onto the cookies and let them sit for at least 15 minutes. If the icing is nice and thick, it will harden on the cookies enough for you to stack them. The cookies will be very soft; handle them gently.
Makes about 16 cookies.
This is how I flattened the dough balls. You don't want them totally flat, because they will flatten out even more during baking.
I didn't change much about Micha's recipe. First of all, I doubled it because I knew before even starting that my family would devour them. They love lemony desserts. I also increased the lemon zest. I just went ahead and zested a whole lemon. It was really due to laziness; it was easier than measuring out the zest. But I always say the more the better when it comes to citrus zest. I love it. I didn't use quite as much lemon juice in the icing as Micha did. I wanted to be able to stack these cookies in a container to take them to the concert. So I made the icing nice and thick and it did a great job of setting up. It doesn't get super duper hard, but it gets solid enough to stack.
These cookies are super delicate and soft. Tender, you might say. I had to be careful putting them in my container, because some of them wanted to kind of fold in half. But the delicate nature of them is part of why they are so delicious. The softness and the lemony-ness make them the perfect summertime treat. They are the ultimate combination of tart and sweet.
My daughter Eva showing me how much she loved her first bite. As a control freak mother, I appreciated how the icing set up so that these cookies weren't a horrible mess all over my kids' faces.
These cookies were just perfect for our Family Fun Night picnic. I think the people sitting next to us were getting pretty jealous watching us savor our delicious homemade cookies! It was a great send-off for summer.
Happy Labor Day! School starts tomorrow. Eek!
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