Looking back over the last couple of years on my blog, I noticed a trend. I seem to start the new year with some lemon based dessert/baked item. I'm not sure why but I crave citrus this time of the year. It is a refreshing change from the rich, decadent desserts that pervade the holiday season. With the New Year, I get a feeling of fresh start, or a new beginning. So maybe that's why I find citrus so appealing this time of the year.
What seems fresher than lemons, possibly only lime! That's partially what drew me to this recipe. The other reason I wanted to make these cookies is because I'd never a cookie with cornmeal as an ingredient. In the spirit of New Years, this year I want to challenge myself to bake and cook things I've never tried before. That's about as close as I'm getting to a resolution.
Lime Cornmeal Cookies
source: Southern Living, Jan 2011 (adapted)
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup plain yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tablespoon lime zest
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Wax or parchment paper
Optional sugar mix for rolling:
1/4 crystallized cup sugar
1 tablespoon lime zest
Combine flour and cornmeal. Beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg and next 3 ingredients, beating until blended. Gradually add flour mixture, beating just until blended after each addition. Cover and chill dough 1 hour. Shape dough into a 12-inch log using wax paper. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and chill 8 hours.
If using, stir crystallized sugar and zest together, Spread on a piece of parchment paper or on your work surface, Unwrap the cookie log and roll log in the sugar mixture. Try to coat the log evenly, pressing lightly to help sugar to adhere.
Preheat oven to 375°. Using a sharp knife, cut log into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set. Transfer to wire racks; cool completely.
When I tasted these cookies, I thought they were pretty good. They had a nice subtle lime flavor, but I wanted to kick that up a little more so I decided to add a lime glaze. I think it made these cookies even better.
The glaze on these cookies is a totally optional addition...well maybe for you, for me it's mandatory!
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
2-3 tablespoons lime juice
zest from one lime
In a bowl, stir confectioners sugar and lime juice together. Stir until smooth. If the mixture is too thick, thin out by adding more lime juice, a teaspoon at a time until you get a glaze like consistency. Stir in lime zest
Place cookies on a baking rack over a baking sheet, to catch any drips. Drizzle on about a teaspoon of the glaze on the cookies. Wait about 5 minutes for the glaze to set-up slightly.