I got very excited when I found a recipe for “lime cooler” cookies on Tuesday on some Tastespotting knock-off site. They looked delicious, they seemed extraordinarily easy to make, and I remembered seeing half a lemon in the fridge, which I figured would be nearly as good as a lime. I decided it was as good a time as any for my first baking project of the summer. On the other hand, it was my first free evening in over a week, and I’d been thinking about how much I wanted to read or watch The Simpsons with my housemates or write in my journal. But… cookies.
As it turned out, there was half an orange, not half a lemon, in the fridge. But housemates Marina and Michele reassured me that the orange would probably be fine instead. Figuring I didn’t have much chance of finding an easier recipe, I decided to take their word for it.
I started by taking the orange half to the grater. It was a bad call: the grater, my hands and the counter got covered in juice.
I put the orange aside to eat later and replaced it with a whole orange, which worked much better.
The rest of the recipe was, as I may have mentioned, ridiculously easy. The only problem was that it didn’t mention anything about a yield. As I beat the butter and vanilla into the dry ingredients, I noticed that what I’d ended up with was a ball of batter about the size of both my fists.
I opened the oven fifteen minutes later to ten lumpy orange-ish cookies, which was definitely not what I’d expected when I started this whole thing.
But dammit, they smelled good and I wanted to eat them. So, proceeding with the final step, I picked up the still-warm “coolers” and deposited them into a Ziploc baggie of confectioners’ sugar. The recipe had warned that doing this before the cookies were cool would make the sugar form “slag,” a substance whose horrors I can hardly dare to imagine.
But in fact the sugar turned out fine.
People seemed to like the cookies, though they sure did taste like the 1/10 stick of butter they each contained. They were also better the next day when they were cooler and harder, with a sort of firm, shortbread-like texture. And the orange flavor worked, but they definitely would have been better with the bite of lemon or lime.
from Cookie Baker Lynn
1 cup bleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, divided
1 tsp finely grated lime (lemon, orange) zest
1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter, softened
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 350 deg. F. Line two cookie sheets with either parchment paper or Silpat.
2. In a medium bowl combine the flour, 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar and lime zest. Add the butter and vanilla; beat, either with a mixer or a wooden spoon, until a dough forms.
3. Drop dough by generous teaspoons onto the cookie sheet, spacing evenly. Bake one sheet at a time for about 15 minutes, until cookie bottoms are golden brown. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.
4. Place the remaining 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar in a quart or gallon-sized zip-loc bag. Working with a dozen [yes, I don’t understand either] at a time, drop cookies into the sugar and shake to coat. The cookies must be completely cooled, or the powdered sugar will form slag. The lime cookies can be stored in an airtight tin for up to 1 week, but most likely they’ll be eaten much sooner than that.