From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...When I was a little girl, bread not made at home came from a neighborhood bakery. These were, of course family operations, and tradition dictated that children be given a free cookie when they came into the store. Though grateful, I was always disappointed because I had my eyes on bigger things. I desperately wanted one of the giant sugar cookies displayed in the shop window. While they never made it to our market basket, there were times when two or three carefully wrapped eggs or a hunk of butter did. During the war years, bakeries were exempt from the rationing imposed on the general population and bakers, interestingly, were also exempt from the draft. No one talked much about it, but our early birthday cakes were almost always the results of negotiations with the baker, who did very nicely for himself during the war years. I'm convinced my love of giant and monster cookies dates back to that period of my life. I love to buy them, I love to bake them, and I certainly love to eat them. It's true I've gotten fussy over time. Most of the commercial variety taste like frosted cardboard, so I've taken to making my own. This is one of the recipes I've collected for them, and because this week is dedicated to all things lemon, I thought you might enjoy my giant lemon sugar cookies. They're not half bad, and if you like lemon, you'll probably love them. You'll find the flavor and ease with which they can be made, improves the longer the dough is chilled. I prepare the dough a day before I plan to shape and bake the cookies. These are really easy to do and the raw cookie dough also freezes well. I hope you'll enjoy them. Here's the recipe.
Giant Lemon Sugar Cookies ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite adapted from Taste of Home
2 cups sugar, divided use
Zest of 2 large lemons, divided use
1 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 to 2 teaspoon lemon extract
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1) To make lemon sugar: Combine 1/2 cup sugar with 1 teaspoon lemon zest in the bowl of a mini-food processor. Pulse until lemon zest is incorporated into sugar. Pour into a small bowl and stir to break up any clumps. Set aside.
2) To make cookie dough: Combine flour, salt, cream of tartar and baking soda in a medium bowl. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter with reserved 1-1/2 cups sugar. Blend in eggs, one at a time. Add lemon extract, lemon juice and reserved lemon zest. Add flour mixture, one cup at a time, blending well after each addition, until all flour is incorporated.
Refrigerate dough for at least 1 hour.
3) To bake cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Shape dough into balls using 2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie. Roll in reserved lemon sugar. Bake in batches of six cookies per 18 x 13-inch baking sheets. Place balls of sugar coated dough on cookie sheets. Press down with the bottom of a glass or measuring cup until cookie is about 1/2-inch thick. Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes. Remove tray from oven. Let cookie sit on tray for 5 minutes before transferring to cooling rack. Yield: 24 saucer-sized cookies.
You might also enjoy these recipes:
Monster Cookies - SwEEts
Monster Cookies - The Sweet's Life
Monster Cookies - Sweet and Savory Tooth
Monster Cookies - Brown Eyed Baker
Monster Cookies - The Pioneer Woman Cooks
Flourless Monster Cookies - Picky Cook