If you had an ear to the food blogging streets of Seattle, you may have heard about Will Bake For Food this past weekend; a benevolent event brought to us by the Two Jennys (Jenny Richards and Jenny Miller) to support Northwest Harvest. If you were there, you were able to take in the sights, sounds, and smells of a room full of delicious baked goods. All created by your friendly neighborhood food bloggers. On behalf of all of us, thank you for your support and I hope you enjoyed your treats. As promised during this weekend’s Will Bake For Food, here is my recipe for the Meyer Lemon Cookies that I brought.
But first, a bit of backstory for the cookies and their foray into Will Bake for Food. When Jenny R. asked me to participate, I knew I had to join in and do what I could to help. Then the pressure and stress of what to bring set in. Go simple? No, I’d be amongst other food people that can bring the noise. Go crazy and technical? No, ultimately I want people to be familiar with what I make and buy it. Will they even buy any of my stuff? Always a worry, so that anxiety wouldn’t go away. In the end, I went with a cookie recipe that is from my mom and is one of her favorites. It was her go-to for bake sales, I may as well keep the tradition going.
In her recipe she calls them Czechoslovakian Lemon Cookies. In researching, I found very little information for these cookies to have such Eastern European roots. So I started calling them Ping’s Lemon Cookies; she tweaked them enough, and I did a last bit of tweaking by using Meyer lemons. They were in season during the bake sale and provided that sweet, citrus, tart balance that Meyer lemons are known for. So there you have it, my entry to the bake sale with a bit of personality.
Without further ado, here is the recipe:
Ping’s Lemon Cookies
Yields – a lot. You’ll have a ton of cookies from this recipe. My mom’s recipe is below; I halved it to better fit into my stand mixer. I’d suggest halving it for ease of use.
Note – instead of using a rolling pin, you can refrigerate the dough into logs. Put the dough on parchment, shape into half-dollar size rounds and place into the fridge. Prior to baking, cut into 1/4 inch discs
1 lb of room temperature butter
5 c of sugar
9 egg yolks
2 lemons, grated for their zest and juiced (set juice and zest aside, separately)
9 c of cake flour
1 tsp of salt
2 tsp of vanilla extract
- In a large bowl mix the butter and sugar together until well incorporated.
- Add egg yolks one at a time. Be sure they have mixed well prior to adding the next yolk.
- Add zest, lemon juice, and vanilla extract and mix well.
- Slowly incorporate cake flour to mix. (I used the hook attachment on the Kitchen-Aid).
- Get your hands dirty and knead the dough; this step is needed to not overwork the dough.
- Take cookie dough, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Rescue cookie dough and on a cutting board take a portion of the dough and with your rolling pin, flatten to about a 1/4 inch. Don’t forget to lightly flour your board and rolling pin to resist sticking.
- With your favorite cookie cutters, section off the cut pieces of dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes. Start checking at the 7-minute mark; you want golden brown edges with pale centers. Pull them out when this happens.
- Move to a cooling rack and dust with powdered sugar.