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a touch of the green

Time to gear up for the green! Tomorrow it is finally St. Patrick’s Day, and coincidentally I need to make a couple of dozen cookies for friends, so green it is! These soft cake-like cookies would be perfect for a Tea or Brunch. The “High Tea” theme is popular for weddings and baby showers, and so are these cookies. For a wedding shower, you could tint one half of the icing color of the bridesmaid dresses and leave the other half white. For a baby shower, pink and blue are the obvious choices. No matter what color theme you choose, these cookies will disappear as fast as you put them out!

I tested baking the cookies on both a Silpat lined baking sheet and one that was sprayed with Pam. Although I generally use the Silpat when baking, the cookies turned out a crisper on the unlined pan and in this case, a crisper is better. You can see the results for yourself in the pictures below. And thanks to my “cookie tester and model”- Connor, who is home for spring break!

Lemon Tea Cookies

1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 large lemon
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
1/3 cup buttermilk, well-shaken
3 cups powdered sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 large lemon
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
Food coloring of your choice

Cookies: Position oven racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Spray 2 baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray.

Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together in a bowl, and set aside. Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes, then add egg and vanilla, beating until combined well.

Reduce mixer speed to low and add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture, and mixing just until smooth.

Drop rounded teaspoons of batter 2-inches apart onto baking sheets. Bake, switching position of sheets halfway through baking; until tops are puffed, edges are pale golden, and cookies spring back when touched, 6 to 8 minutes total. Transfer to a rack to cool.

Icing: Stir together powdered sugar, zest, lemon juice, and vanilla in a small bowl until smooth, adding drops of water, if needed for a smooth spreadable consistency.

Transfer half of the icing to another bowl and add drops of food coloring as desired. With an offset spatula, spread colored icing over half of the flat side of each cookie. Starting with cookies you iced first, spread plain white icing over another half of each cookie.

Wait until the icing is dry before stacking cookies, with sheets of parchment or wax paper, between layers. May be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for 4 or 5 days.

Makes about 2  1/2 dozen cookies

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1 Kim S. { 03.16.10 at 1:39 PM }

THose look great! I am in the market for new pans. Do you have any suggestions?

2 Linda Hopkins { 03.16.10 at 2:12 PM }

Hi Kim, as in sheet pans or pots and pan?

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