When I opened up the December issue of Gourmet, I was instantly drawn to one very sparkly, very pretty, very glittery cookie. But do you know what’s even better than a pretty face? Substance. The object of my affection was filled with fluffy cream.
I set out to make these Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies on Thursday evening, in anticipation of bringing them along to my many meetings on Friday. The recipe in Gourmet instructed me to place “scant teaspoon” sized balls of dough onto the cookie sheet. My cookies were going down on the pan as chubby tablespoons. When they came out of the oven, I laughed out loud at the idea of making sandwich cookies out of them – they would have been the fattest cookie sandwiches ever. Well, maybe not ever. I believe that the long ago forgotten Oreo Big Stuff still holds that title.
But they would have been uncomfortably big for people to eat. So I ditched the sandwich idea and just piped the lemony icing right on top of each cookie and served them up as singletons. People were singing their praises all Friday long.
I was instantly enamored of these cookies. They are so darn pretty. And the taste … oh my goodness. They are good. These are perfect holiday cookies: glittery, pretty, and delicious.
Recipe adapted from Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies – Gourmet, December 2008
Makes about 50 cookies
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cornstarch
¼ tsp salt
2 sticks Earth Balance (or butter substitute of choice), softened
½ cup confectioners sugar
1 tbsp grated lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 tbsp grated lemon zest
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp light corn syrup
½ stick Earth Balance, softened
1. Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silipat sheet.
2. Whisk together flour, cornstarch, and salt.
3. Beat together Earth Balance and confectioners sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, then beat in zest and vanilla. At low speed, mix in flour mixture just until a soft dough forms.
4. Put sanding sugars in different bowls. Roll a scant tsp of dough into a ball and drop into sugar, turning to coat. Reshape if necessary and transfer to a baking sheet. Repeat, spacing balls 3/4 inch apart, until baking sheet is filled.
5. Bake until tops are slightly cracked but still pale (bottoms will be pale golden), 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool completely. Form and bake more cookies on second baking sheet.
6. Beat together all filling ingredients in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until combined well. Transfer to sealable bag and snip off a corner. Pipe about 1/2 tsp filling on top of each cookie.