“THERE’S A FEW THINGS I’VE LEARNED IN LIFE: ALWAYS THROW SALT OVER YOUR LEFT SHOULDER, KEEP ROSEMARY BY YOUR GARDEN GATE, PLANT LAVENDER FOR GOOD LUCK, AND FALL IN LOVE WHENEVER YOU CAN.” Alice Hoffman.
About a month ago, I participated in an online bake sale. I bid $50 on some cookies and I won!!! Sadly, though, I never received the cookies! It’s no matter, because I would have donated the money to that great cause even if I had been overbid. But what was disappointing is that I bid on some Lemon Lavender cookies because I have never tasted lavender in food before. And I wanted to taste what they should taste like, before I tried them on my own.
But since the return of my kitchen mojo…I decided to go ahead and attempt this for myself! And I must tell you that I really enjoyed working with this lovely, pretty and aromatic herb. My fear was that I would use too much, and my cookies would taste like a bar of savon du provence! (Where is Jill Colonna when I need her!) Well let me tell you. These were so good….no bars of soap here! Just a light, lemony, sweet, crispy cookie with a subtle hint of home grown. . . . .
I did not know that planting lavender brought one good luck. So I am glad that I did! And it must have worked! Because there is not one thing I would change about these cookies. The good folks at Butler’s Orchard special ordered this lavender for me. I cut a few stems and hung them upside down in my kitchen. A little lavender goes a long way in this sweet little lemon cookie. After the success of this recipe, I am certain I will be searching more recipes with lavender!
And I will admit to you, that when searching recipes for lemon lavender cookies, I chose the one that used the least amount of lavender. I have used saffron before, and successfully so. But I know that overdoing it with saffron can give your food a very perfumey taste. And I wanted to keep the lavender as mild as possible until I knew what to expect. This particular recipe called for 2 teaspoons of lavender, which was perfect. When you bite into the cookie, you immediately taste the sweet, buttery, lemony goodness. The lavender comes in almost as an aftertaste….and very pleasantly so! The cookies that I bid on were frosted. And so I originally intended on doing a little lemon drizzle. But they are just sweet enough on their own. Really, I wouldn’t change a thing!
Shall we then?……..
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Yields: about 48 cookies
LEMON LAVENDER COOKIES:
- 3/4 cup of granulated sugar
- 2 Tablespoons of lemon zest
- 2 Tablespoons of fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons of dried lavender
- 1 and 3/4 cup of all purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1 1/2 sticks (12 Tablespoons) of unsalted butter, chilled and cut into little cubes
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla
Preheat oven to 375°F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper and spray the parchment paper with cooking spray. (These are delicate little things and you don’t want them to stick!)
In a food processor, pulse together the sugar, lemon zest and lavender until combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add this to the sugar mix in your processor and pulse again until combined. Scatter the butter on top of this mix and pulse some more, until the mix is the texture of corn meal. In another bowl, beat the egg yolk, lemon juice and vanilla. And while the machine is running, slowly stream the liquid in. Continue to process until the dough forms a ball. Remove, roll into a cylinder and wrap tightly in saran. Either freeze for 45 minutes or chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before using.
When ready to bake, slice the cookies and place them on parchment lined pans. At the last minute, I decided that I wanted to use a cookie cutter to give them some definition. And the diameter of my roll of dough was slightly smaller than the cookie cutter I wanted to use. So I very lightly floured my work surface and rolling pin and gently pressed them out a bit before pressing out my shapes.
Bake until very lightly golden on the edges about 10 minutes. Enjoy.
Recipe adapted from Cook’s Illustrated