Yesterday, I posted a picture of cookies made for a Mother’s Day get together. The plan was to collect up several of my friend’s mothers, who all knew each other, serve coffee and goodies and let them catch up on their “organ recitals”. All of them are in their mid eighties and livers, kidneys and hearts can easily become the topic of conversation.
The recipe for the cookies was requested and I am happy to oblige.
You will need:
1 cup butter
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups sifted flour
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tsp. lemon extract (I used 1/2 bottle of Dr.Oetker essences if you have it handy)
1 tsp. lemon zest (yes, both)
Deep breath in. Find a place of gratitude for all that you have received from the woman you are baking these for. That can be everything from the love and encouragement you have been blessed with to the fortitude to survive. Open your heart and ask the compassionate spirits to guide you, begin…
This is a whipped shortbread. Beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the lemon extract and zest.
Sift together cornstarch, flour and icing sugar. Sift into bowl with butter and mix together. If using a hand mixer, keep it on slow while adding the flour mixture in sections. This will keep the flour in the bowl and not everywhere else.
Once all ingredients are mixed, divide the soft mixture into two sections, flatten down into patties, wrap and place in fridge for at least one hour.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Unwrap the dough and roll out on a floured work surface. While the dough is cold it will easily crack and break. Not to worry it softens up quickly. Roll to about 1/4 inch thick and cut with a cookie cutter into the shapes you would like.
I have a cutter with a fluted edge on the outside and a heart in the middle which makes it easy to do this. If you do not have something similar, use a glass and something smaller like an egg cup or a bottle cap, as long as it is clean and has a thin edge. I only made a few sandwiches as my stepmother prefers them plain. If you are making more, remember you will need one top for each bottom.
Place gently on an ungreased cookie sheet, being careful not to pull the dough out of shape. As the dough gets warmer it will become softer so if need be, put the dough back in the fridge.
Bake at 325 for 12 minutes.
When the cookies are lightly browned around the edges remove from the oven and lightly sprinkle with sugar. This will need to be done while the cookies are warm as the sugar will not adhere once they are cool. Remove to a cooling rack.
Spread the full cookies with a jam of your choice. Something with contrast and no big pieces of fruit is good. I finished up some crab apple ginger jelly that was in the fridge. Top with the cookie that has the piece in the middle cut out, so the jelly shows through.
Something to consider is that the jelly will soften the cookie over time so I would suggest not making too many in advance but to fill them before serving instead.
Can you think of a better way to say “I heart you” for Mother’s Day?