After a disastrous and disappointing baking fail over the weekend I was looking for a little pick-me-up, something to get me back in the game. Cookies seemed like the logical choice. They’re hard to mess up, don’t take a lot of time, and everyone loves a tasty cookie.
I decided to leave my stand mixer where it sat and use a bowl and wooden spoon instead. I needed to get back to the basics and find my baking mojo again.
I had forgotten what it was like to cream butter and sugar by hand, forgotten that it was even possible without the help of my modern appliances. But they blended together just nicely, all it took was a little elbow grease.
As you’re mixing these cookies together you may think you’re adding too much lime, but resist the urge to stop zesting after only two or three limes. Follow the recipe exactly and you’ll have yourself a cookie with just the right amount of tartness, enough to please lime enthusiasts, but not too much to overwhelm everyone else.
The cookies are almost like little cakes, very soft and tender. The cornmeal flavor and texture is there, but subtle. Sometimes cornmeal can be too overpowering in a recipe, I’ve found, and make the product grainy, but not here. The glaze is really “the icing on the cake”, and is perhaps my favorite part about this cookie.
All in all, I’d say this recipe is a real winner. I bet you haven’t made a cookie quite like this one and I think you probably should. I urge you to mix them by hand too, that helps to make them all the more rewarding and enjoyable.
For the cookies:
- 1 cup (228 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (175 grams) sugar
- 2 tablespoons lime zest (from about 4 limes)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups (280 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) cornmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
For the glaze:
- 1 cup (140 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
- Juice of 1 lime
- Zest of 1 lime
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or with a wooden spoon, mix the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (this will take up to 10 minutes if mixing by hand). Add the lime zest and mix for 1 minute. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each, then the vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
- Roll by the scant 1/4 cup and place on the prepared sheet pan, about 2 inches apart. Gently press each ball with the palm of your hand to flatten slightly.
- Bake until the edges are just turning golden brown and centers are still pale, about 17-20 minutes. Do not over bake. Let cool on the sheet pan for 15 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- To make the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar, lime zest, and lime juice. Add water 1 teaspoon at a time to reach the consistency you want. It should be thin enough to spread over the cookies.
- Glaze the cookies on a wire rack with a sheet pan placed underneath to catch excess glaze. Let the glaze harden for several minutes before serving.
- These cookies are best served the day they are made, but will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days.
Adapted from Flour Cookbook.