Friday, August 9, 2013

Iced little lemon drops and the reasons behind each recipe

Iced little lemon drops / Biscoitinhos de limão siciliano com cobertura

Those of us who cook and bake have different reasons for choosing this or that recipe, right? I believe that wanting to eat is the most basic reason, but that is followed by the ingredients available, the seasons, the weather, if we’ve having company or if we’re eating alone... Do you agree?

I add to that list a certain technique I want to learn or improve, recipes with curious names, and peculiar or unusual methods, the latter being the reason why I made these cookies (plus the beautiful and fragrant lemons I had around). Here, part of the unfinished dough is set aside only to become the icing later on – I thought that was really interesting and had to try it myself. It worked perfectly and the cookies turned out delicious, very delicate in size – which is something I love – and very lemony, on the verge of puckering lips – which is something I love even more. :)

Iced little lemon drops
from the delicious Simply Sensational Cookies

finely grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks/170g) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups (280g) icing sugar, divided use
generous ¼ teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ cups (210g) all-purpose flour
pinch of salt

Preheat to 180°C/350°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with baking paper.
Put the lemon zest in the bowl of an electric mixer, then reserve the juice separately in a cup. To the zest add the butter, 3 tablespoons of the reserved lemon juice and 1 cup (140g) of the icing sugar. Beat on low, then medium speed, until lightened in color and fluffy, about 1 ½ minutes – mixture might look curdled at first, but keep on beating it. Measure out 2 tablespoons of the beaten butter mixture and reserve in a small deep bowl; it will be used to make the icing.
On low speed, thoroughly beat the baking soda into the butter mixture left in the large bowl. Then beat in the flour and salt just until evenly incorporated. If dough is very soft, let it stand for 5 minutes.
Drop dough by heaping measuring teaspoons, spacing about 5cm (2in) apart on baking sheets; keep the cookies small.
Bake on middle rack one pan at a time for about 10 minutes, until cookies are tinged with brown at the edges and just firm when pressed in the center top. Transfer pan to wire rack. Let cool.
Stir 1 ½ tablespoons of the reserved lemon juice and the remaining 1 cup of icing sugar into the reserved 2 tablespoons butter mixture until very well blended. If necessary, then the icing with a little more lemon juice stirring well, until it is fluid but no runny. Stir in a little more icing sugar if the icing is too runny to hold some shape. Spread the icing on top of the cookies then place them on a wire rack until the icing sets, 30-40 minutes.

Makes about 30 – I made the exact recipe above, used 1 ½ leveled teaspoons of dough per cookie and got 70 tiny cookies


Jan said...

That is really interesting to reserve part of the butter/lemon/sugar mixture for the frosting! I've never done that before. On a personal note, I find all my baking is a great excuse to buy more cookbooks and food magazines ;) But you are right, it is also a learning experience and an opportunity to try a new technique.

Laura (Tutti Dolci) said...

Fabulous idea, I love the name and the technique for the icing!

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