Orange-Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Some time during the peak of the chocoholic's chocolate chunk cookie baking madness, I decided that we needed something, anything, to break the all-consuming chocolate cycle. I was craving something a bit lighter, something with a bit of acidity and zing to it.

I scouted around for something simple and quick to whip up and thought that lemon shortbread cookies sounded absolutely perfect.

Adapted from Debster's Lemon Shortbread Cookies Recipe

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 cups sifted flour
zest of one lemon
zest of one orange
juice of one lemon
castor sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 325 degrees celcius.
Cream butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer.
Add lemon juice, zest and flour. Mix well on low speed.
Drop cookie dough balls on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until cookies are light brown
Sprinkle some castor sugar onto the tops of the cookies as soon as they are removed from the oven, while they are still soft.

Some of the comments about the original recipe involved the cookie being not lemony enough and because I really wanted something with a punch, I increased the amount of lemon zest and juice. After deciding that I would use the zest of two lemons, I discovered that we only had one lying around in the kitchen so I thought some orange rind would be a good substitute and it was - the orange zest gave the cookies a more well-rounded flavour. Sprinkling some sugar on top of the cookies while they were still soft let the sugar set a little - the sweetness of the slightly crunchy sugar was a lovely complement to the sharp, bold cookie.

Light, buttery, uplifting - perfect with a cup of tea.

So there we go, the antidote to too much chocolate - orange-lemon shortbread cookies.

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