Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Lemon Butter Cookies / Sablés Au Citron

title
We had such wet weather last week, with rains pouring down and gloomy skies. Going to the market required juggling an umbrella with my usual market bag, and using my free hand to inspect veggies and fruits (and trying to avoid the big drips of water from overhead make-shift awnings that seem to target my head specifically!). It also meant having to market in actual “closed” shoes as opposed to my usual flip-flops...criminy.

C was woebegone as he couldn’t go biking (he’s a passionate mountain biker). I would spy him early on weekend mornings, shuffling out of bed and peering hopefully through the window blinds, then shuffling back to bed with a sigh and a resigned look. The trails would be too muddy to ride through.

This week however flounced in full of sunshine! Sun blazing through the windows and hammering the streets with its heat. And though I’m tempted to turn on the a/c during the day, I resist. Opting instead to enjoy this bit of light and warmth in one of my beach batiks and my latest pair of flip-flops. I admit the heat may often drive me bananas, but sometimes it’s good to take a step back and be thankful for the blessings the sun brings me: all-year tank tops, never having to suffer through bitter cold weather, vitamin D synthesis, and protection from vampires just to name a few.

No matter how yummy it may be to nuzzle back into a fluffy duvet on a rainy Sunday morning, I can’t deny the air of hope that sunshine brings with it.

That’s what I’d like to celebrate with this entry to A Taste Of Yellowhope. The hope that when many gather together in support of something, the darkness does not seem so daunting nor as insurmountable. The hope you feel when you know you have someone who will stick with you through tough times. The hope that they may find a cure. The hope that tomorrow will be sunnier, cooler, better.

LiveSTONG with A Taste of Yellow is a food blogging event created by the fabulous Barbara of Winos and Foodies in support of the Lance Armstrong Foundation, to raise awareness of cancer issues. It is a platform for bloggers to share their stories, or simply their support. I have always been a great admirer of Barbara and the way she approaches life...with polish and flair and always a kindness for others. And hope too I believe.

I chose these Lemon Butter Cookies (or Sablés Au Citron if you want to be cute and French...which I must admit I sometimes do) from Clotilde’s cookbook Chocolate & Zucchini, page 224. The cheery yellow of the lemon and the butter, along with the heavenly smell of lemon rind being grated, assured me that I was on the right track with this recipe. And the delicious results were all the proof I needed to know I had made the correct choice.

Here’s what you do: Mix together 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon fleur de sel (I used one scant teaspoon), and 1 tablespoon freshly grated and finely chopped lemon zest (from organic lemons if possible!). Add 3.5 ounces (7 tablespoons) unsalted butter that is well chilled and diced. Rub the butter into the flour mixture (this feels really nice), or cut in with a pastry cutter until combined into what looks like coarse crumbs. Add one egg yolk and stir with a fork until blended. Take the dough into your hands and knead (lightly now...you’re not making a baguette) until it comes together and forms a ball. If they dough looks too dry add some ice water (a little at a time!). If it feels too sticky add some flour (a little at a time!). Now, halve the dough and roll each half into a log about 1-inch in diameter. Wrap each log in cling wrap and tuck in the freezer for a 30-minute nap (you can also freeze the dough for up to a month -- freshly baked butter cookies any time you want...yay!). When you are ready to bake them, remove a log from the freezer, unwrap, and slice into 1/4-inch rounds using a serrated knife (roll the dough a quarter-turn after each slice so the log stays round). Repeat with the second log. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment and stick into a 350F (pre-heated) oven for 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let the cookies cool completely before adding the glaze.

To make the glaze: I only made half the glaze so to get the full quantity just multiply by two. Place 1/2 cup powdered sugar in a bowl with 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice – whisk until syrupy. Glaze the cookies using a pastry brush or the back of a teaspoon...or as I did here, place glaze in a ziplock bag or parchment paper cone and pipe onto cookie in any design you wish! Let cookies stand until the glaze is set.

These cookies bake up to a buttery crispness on the outside and a melting flakiness on the inside, infused with a bright lemony aroma and shot through with bursts of fleur de sel. They would be perfect shared with a good friend over tea and a nice chat.

Barbara has extended the deadline for entry submission to September 18 so you can still catch up!

Wishing you all a sunny day with a taste of yellow! :)

p.s. the sun was out for the past few days, but as I post this it has started to rain again...good thing I have stored a little sunshine in the form of these cookies!

p.p.s. it's the following day and the sun's out again! :)

67 comments:

Junglefrog said...

That is a great cause and some lovely cookies too! I love all things lemon so this is just bookmarked for future use!

Patricia Scarpin said...

These are right up my alley, Joey - love cookies and lemony things. Yum!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Oh, they look so pretty! A delicious treat!

Cheers,

Rosa

Anh said...

Yes, hope! :) I love your post!

ABowlOfMush said...

These look amazing! I can just imagine how fab these are!

Zoe said...

What a wonderful cause. I love lemon cookies!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Junglefrog! It is a great cause and a nice event to support! These cookies are yummy...even my non-sweets-eating husband thinks so :)

Hi Patricia! You are the cookie queen! :) I think you would definitely like these!

Thanks Rosa! :)

Hi Anh! Thank you :) Happy you enjoyed the post!

Hi ABowlOFMush! They were :) All thanks to Clotilde’s lovely recipe!

Hi Zoe! It is! I on the other hand love butter cookies ;) So we both win with this recipe!

Erin said...

These are gorgeous! I think I'm going to have to make these right now.

Irene said...

No, seriously, these look ridiculously good!!!

Bron said...

So pretty Joey, I love to take a couple with my cuppa right now. xxx

Andy said...

How intersting. I just read a post on Rasa Malaysia about a type of citrus fruit called Calamansi - basically a mix between orange and limes. I reckon that would be pretty good in this recipe.

They look great, in fact I may even take the plunge this weekend as the mother in law is down!!!

Barbara said...

A beautiful and thoughtful post. Joey. Thank you. I can see I'll be making these soon.They look wonderful.

ChichaJo said...

Hi Erin! They were yummy...I hope you enjoy them!

Hi Irene! They were :) Thanks!

Hi Bron! Thanks! I worked hard to keep my hand steady...I’m not the most delicate of decorators!

Hi Andy! I’m sure it would! Calamansi is actually a very typical ingredient here in the Philippines...used in all sorts of dishes and condiments :) Read the post on Rasa Malaysia too! Hope the MIL like this!

Hi Barbara! Thank you as well Barbara...glad you liked the post...hope you’ll like the cookies too! Hugs!

Divina Pe said...

Your lemon butter cookies are full of sunshine and hope. You'll never know when it's going to rain on this tropical country.

Anne said...

weather in the Philippines sure is unpredictable :-) at least you have this cookies which is a sure winner!

Shalum said...

these are lovely :)

Marvin said...

Protection from vampires is essential.

Your cookies look so bright and cheerful all on their own, I'm sure they taste as good as the look.

Gloria said...

While I'm not a big lemon fan, these cookies make my mouth water! I might change my mind about lemon!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Divina! Thank you :) Oh you certainly said it...it rained again today, and then an (mild) earthquake I believe? Although not in my area...

Hi Anne! It really is!!! Yes, these cookies are good rain or shine :)

Hi Shalum! Thanks!

Hi Marvin! Very essential. The cookies are really yummy!

Hi Gloria! They are really delicate and buttery...maybe if you are not too big about lemon you could make a simple sugar glaze instead of this lemon glaze for topping :)

Shalimar said...

of course we all love to sound like French right?
sable au citron sounds more elegant ;-) copied the recipe already.

Am in London and there is a french market for 3 days here at my sis' area. I passed by and said bonjour oh lala the guy suddenly made a rapid french on me lol.

veron said...

Those cookies look perfect and fantastic!

sinnlighet said...

oh my... love your virtual image!! amazing blog!!

regards from sweden & agneta

Peabody said...

You can never go wrong with a butter cookie. I mean butter. These look super tasty.

Bordeaux said...

Really lovely cookies and a very beautiful entry. I enjoyed reading it a lot.

Suzana said...

Joey, I love the sweet text you wrote to go along with the cookies. Rainy or sunny, those are perfect for any day! :)

Gattina said...

what a great post and a splendid entry to the event Jo!

pityenlacocina said...

these sables are a delicacy for the palate, they looks so delicious, i love this recipe, and i love your blog, wonderfulcallos recipe, i will be back to your blog, loved it!

cheers from a spanish girl in london,

pity

ChichaJo said...

Hi Sha! That market sounds lovely...I’m sure you know a lot more French than I do!

Thanks Veron! :)

Hi Sinnlighet! Thanks for the nice comment! :)

Hi Peabody! That’s the truth (about butter)! ;)

Hi Bordeaux! Glad you enjoyed the post :)

Hi Suzana! Aw thanks! These cookies are definitely good whatever the weather :)

Hi Gattina! Thank you!

Hi Pityenlacocina! Thanks for stopping by and leaving such a sweet comment :) Hope to see you here again! :)

Midge said...

What pretty, sunshiny cookies!

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Millet said...

these look so yummy, joey! i love everything lemon. will do this this weekend. will also try doing this with lime.

ChichaJo said...

Hi Midge! Thanks! :)

Hi Angelika! Thanks for the heads up and the award!

Hi Millet! Hope you like it! Lime sounds fantastic too!

Shandy said...

What adorable cookies and for such a wonderful cause. I have lost several close family members to cancer so Hope is always a cherished desire.

Ling said...

I strongly believe that anything made with lemons is extremely healthy for you, and must be consumed in generous amounts... :D yeah, I really do!

very pretty indeed, and I certainly can taste them!

Rasa Malaysia said...

Joey, I am always looking for a perfect butter cookies recipe and yours look great. I will probably do without the glaze because I love my cookies plain. :)

Manggy said...

I arrived to Ondoy- not good :(

Anyway, I wish I could have participated- would have, if I were home. But this is a beautiful entry, Joey, full of hope and sunshine- and in each bite too, I'll bet!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Shandy! Thank you...yes, it’s definitely a great a cause to support!

Hi Ling! I share your belief! A good reason to have more of these cookies :)

Hi Bee! Hope you enjoy them if you do get to give them a try :)

Hi Manggy! A friend of mine also arrived to the typhoon...what a weekend this has been. Such calamity but good to see everyone coming together to help.

Jam said...

Hi Joey! These cookies really made my day (and everyone else's!)
This morning, i think i have produced about 44 pieces didn't last! thanks for this recipe! This is the perfect "happy cookie" to shoo-away Ondoy's memories! Cheers! :)

ChichaJo said...

Hi Jam! So happy to hear that :) And glad they cheered you up after Ondoy and its effects!

Tanya said...

I can't buy fleur de sel where i live. May I use regular salt instead? If so, how much?

Thanks

ChichaJo said...

Hi Tanya! If you can't find fleur de sel you can substitute sea salt...not sure of the amount though so try a little less first...hope this helps!

Tanya said...

Thanks ChichaJo!
I'll give it a shot :)

ChichaJo said...

Hi Tanya! Hope it works! What you are looking for is not so fine a salt that it dissolves into the cookie and makes it salty, but something that gives the cookie a few shots of contrast here and there :)

we are never full said...

beautiful - i can almost taste the sweet/sour/creamy flavors. me wants!

ChichaJo said...

Hello We Are Never Full! Hope you get to try these...they are lovely!

kescribbles said...

Can you use reg table salt if you dont have sea salt? I was also thinking of using Orange because I have no lemon, I wish I did!!! Has anyone else done this?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Kescribbles! I like sea salt because the slightly larger grains gives you small shots of salt...I have never tried it with regular table salt but you can try just using a little less :) You can certainly try using orange...I think an orange cookie would be delicious!

Anonymous said...

I wish you had just said "scant teaspoon of sea salt" it would have saved me the time of looking up "fleur de sel".

LunaCafe said...

So delicate and lovely. These would be wonderful for a little girl's tea party. ...Susan

Anonymous said...

love these cookies, next time i may just put them into one roll. but the lemon zest came through very nicely and the frosting added just the touch of suger needed

Madeline Ciccone said...

I made them and they were terrible! Too much fleur de sel - it masked all the other flavours and was just unbearable! Also, the lemon flavour wasn't very apparent. I would recommend less fleur de sel and a little more lemon zest!

Laura said...

Found these via Pinterest and they look absolutely delicious. Pinned!

Anonymous said...

Is there supposed to be baking soda in these? I made them and they turned out NOTHING like the picture :( They didn't rise at all and I followed the recipe to a T. They look like quarters, not cookies!

Anonymous said...

Yes I agree with you ,my husband made these tonight and they were gross ....He loves to bake for the holidays ...somethings missing ...I m deleteing this pin

ChichaJo said...

Hi Anonymous -- so sorry they didn't turn out well! There is no baking soda in the original recipe (I just re-checked) and they are not really meant to rise, more like "slice and baked" type cookies -- so roll them and slice then to the size you want.

Hi Madeline -- you can certainly lessen the salt and up the amount of zest...I liked them but each taste is different :)

Lori Milligan said...

I made these tonight and was very disappointed that they weren't very big and the lemon flavor was lacking. I would double the zest and cut the salt in half if I ever made them again...probably won't because there are so many recipes to try!

Valerie said...

I definitely have to try these. I LOVE lemon.
You're not on facebook? Do you plan to start a facebbook page?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Valerie! No Facebook page just yet...but maybe soon! :)

Rebecca Gail Offenbacker said...

What are the calorie and carbohydrate count? My husband is diabetic so we have to count everything.

Rebecca Gail Offenbacker said...

What are the calorie and carbohydrate count? My husband is diabetic so we have to count everything.

ChichaJo said...

Hi Rebecca! I'm so sorry but I don't have that information...

linda brogan said...

Awesome ! This is the lemon cookie that tops all!! They came out perfect! Gotta love a great recipe!! Going into my favorites!!

linda brogan said...

Awesome ! This is the lemon cookie that tops all!! They came out perfect! Gotta love a great recipe!! Going into my favorites!!

Anonymous said...

They turn out nothing like the picture and they are NOT very good either.

Anonymous said...

Delicious!!! And so pretty too!! I used a scant tsp of sea salt to save myself a trip to William Sonoma, but will definitely pick some up next time I'm at the mall! Initially my dough was very very dry, so I added an extra yolk. Still very dry, so added several tsp of ice water till consistency was right. Came out perfect. Can't wait to try it with lime. Great recipe

Anonymous said...

I just came across this recipe yesterday and just HAD to do it. They turned out sooooo good! They are good without the glaze, but the glaze just takes them to a new high. Thanks for this recipe!!

Anonymous said...

What is fleur de sel? Thank you