Sunday, September 19, 2010

Lemon Cut-Out Cookies

Ingredients for the dough:
3 cups unbleached flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup sugar
2 sticks salted butter
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest

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Ingredients for lemon royal icing:
4 T meringue powder
scant 1/2 cup water
16 ounces powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon light corn syrup
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Preparing the dough:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda. Set aside.

With the paddle attachment of an electric mixer, beat together the sugar and cold butter until fluffy. Add in the egg, vanilla, lemon juice and zest. Beat until combined.

On low speed, add in the flour mixture in 3 additions. Scrape the bottom of the bowl as necessary. Knead together the dough as needed by hand as it will be very stiff.

Roll out on a floured surface and cut into shapes about 3/8 to 1/4" thick. Place on parchment lined sheets. Freeze 5-10 minutes on the sheets before placing in the oven.

Bake 9-12 minutes, depending on cookie cutter size. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack and let cool completely.

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Preparing the icing:
Combine the meringue powder and water. With the paddle attachment of an electric mixer, beat until combined and foamy.

Sift in the powdered sugar and beat on low to combine.

Add in the corn syrup and lemon juice

Increase speed to med-high and beat for about 5-10 minutes, just until the icing is glossy and stiff peaks form. You should be able to remove the beater from the mixer and hold up and jiggle without the peak falling. Do not overbeat.

Cover with plastic wrap touching the icing or divide and color using gel paste food colorings.


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