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lemonsugarcookies11_little-house-dunes

by Heather Harris Brady

Anyone who’s been with this blog through the winter holidays knows that I have the same cookie lineup every year, but I continue to audition new prospects because never let it be said that I’m one to rest on my cookie laurels 😉

This is the first audition – a soft sugar cookie (which American readers will recognize as Lofthouse style). It has that same addictive cakey quality as the store-bought version, but with the twist of lemon poppyseed. It’s based on a compilation of recipes online with a few changes of my own. Sorry for the crappy picture, we’re really short on daylight at the moment!

I like the Scandinavian white-on-white coloring, but if you want to get crazy with frosting colors or sprinkles now would be the time!

Soft Lemon Poppyseed Sugar Cookies, Makes about 36 3″ cookies

  • 1/2 c. butter, at room temperature
  • 1 c. granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t. lemon extract or bakery emulsion
  • Zest from two lemons
  • 3 c. flour
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. baking powder
  • 3/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 T. poppyseeds

For the frosting:

  • 1/2 c. butter, at room temperature1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 1 t. almond extract
  • 4 c. powdered sugar
  • 6 T. heavy cream

Combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until light and fluffy.

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Add the eggs one at a time, beating between each addition. Then beat in the lemon flavoring and zest.

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Combine the remaining dry ingredients and half of them to the bowl. Beat well. Then beat in the yogurt.

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Add the second half of the dry ingredients and beat for another minute.

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Scoop the dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap, wrap it up as a ball and refrigerate it for at least an hour. When you’re ready to bake preheat the oven to 425. (I know, hot for a cookie recipe!)

Turn the dough out.

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Roll it out to about 1/3″ thick and cut. (I only worked with part of the dough at a time so I could make sure I kept the thickness consistent.)

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Put the cookies on a lightly greased cookie sheet.

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Bake for 6-7 minutes. I took them out right around the 7-minute mark.

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While the cookies are cooling make the frosting. (I didn’t do the step by step here to keep the post length down.)

Beat the sugar and butter together, drizzling in the flavoring and half the cream. Mixture will be thick. Continue beating, drizzling in the remaining cream as you go, until you reach your desired spreading consistency. I have a stand mixer so I just turn it to high and let it run for about five minutes at this point. The longer you beat the creamier your frosting will be.

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When the cookies are completely cool frost them.

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You can leave them out, uncovered for an hour or so, and the frosting will crust over just a bit. I froze mine on the sheet and then stacked them between sheets of waxed paper in a freezer container to freeze until the holidays.

lemonsugarcookies11_little-house-dunes


Four years ago: 12 Days of Cookies
Three years ago: Russian Braids
Two years ago: Apple Clafouti
One year ago: Holiday Biscotti


candiedpeel4_little_house_dunes

by Heather Harris-Brady

Since it’s getting to be salad time I thought I would post these little nibbles. You could also put them out with drinks, as part of a cheese course or as a dessert garnish. But they also make an interesting addition to salads, with goat cheese and chopped nuts. Plus, you’re making use of something you’d usually just compost!

Candied Grapefruit Peel, Makes about 2 cups

Peel (in long strips) from two medium grapefruit

1/2 c. water

1/2 t. vinegar

1 c. granulated sugar

Superfine sugar for final rolling

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Take your strips of peel and remove as much of the white pith as you can. Then cut it into 1/8″ or 1/4″ wide strips.

Put it in a saucepan and cover it with water. Boil for five minutes.

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Drain and repeat. This removes the bitterness from the peel.

Drain once more. Bring the 1/2 c. water, vinegar and 1 c. sugar to a boil. Add the peel and cook until the syrup reaches the soft ball stage (about 235 degrees on a candy thermometer).

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While the syrup is cooking prepare a work surface (marble is ideal but a countertop will work). Cover it with parchment or foil and spread it heavily with superfine sugar. When the peel reaches 235 spoon it out onto the superfine sugar.

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Working quickly, spread it out so the pieces are in one layer. Roll them in the sugar until they are completely coated. When they are cool, store in an airtight tin. You can roll them in more sugar before using them if they aren’t as white and crystally as you would like.

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