lemon crinkle cookies

I made these cookies over the summer, and I fell in love.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t do a post on them.  I tried to squeeze all of the cookies onto one baking sheet, and they all baked together into one, big, ugly lemon crinkle cookie.
Nonetheless, I enjoyed my big, mess-of-a-cookie wholeheartedly — and vowed to always use two baking sheets.

I made these for my lemon-loving friend Emilia.  She is sensible, cheerful, and full of sunshine — just like these lemon cookies.  She has always been there to accompany me on runs and she shares my love of wrapping presents.  On Friday, we spent about two and a half hours sitting on the floor of my bedroom wrapping presents and making little gift tags.  She’s also super sweet and gives the best advice (hello, these cookies are rolled generously in powdered sugar).

Even the biggest chocoholics out there will fall head-over-heels for these mouth-watering, refreshing lemon cookies.  Winter is the perfect time to take advantage of all of the citrus that is in season — not to mention that these cookies can put a good dose of sunshine into even the most blustery winter days. Oh, and if that’s not enough reason for you to get off of your computer and bake these now — your hands will smell heavenly after zesting all those lemons.

With love,

½ cups butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 whole egg
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
¼ teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoons baking powder
⅛ teaspoons baking soda
1-½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line light colored baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and
fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest, and juice. Scrape sides and
mix again. Stir in all dry ingredients slowly until just combined,
excluding the powdered sugar. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again
briefly. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon
of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on baking sheet
and repeat with remaining dough.
Bake for 9-11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and
cookies look matte {not melty or shiny}. Remove from oven and cool
cookies about 3 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

From Wit & Whistle

white chocolate cranberry biscotti

I told you all about my holiday cookie boxes — now I get to tell you about all of the goodies that I stuffed inside of them.  Get ready for an overload of cookie recipes in the next few days (I owe it to you after being MIA for the last two weeks). 

In the past, I would have never ordered biscotti at a coffee shop.  Why would I choose a hard, crunchy cookie wrapped in plastic when I could have a warm slice of banana bread, or a delicious   slice of blueberry coffee cake? This recipe has entirely changed my views on biscotti. These are not the brick-like, tooth-breaking, stale biscotti that may come to mind. These are buttery, vanilla-y, and pure heaven when sitting alongside a dark, rich cup of coffee.

I made these for my friend Grace who loves the blog Cupcakes and Cashmere.  Emily Schuman (the genius behind Cupcakes and Cashmere) wrote that these were one of her favorite things to have with afternoon tea.  She makes hers with almonds and orange liqueur.  To make mine more festive for the holidays, I substituted white chocolate and cranberries for the orange zest and liqueur.  Grace, just like Emily Schuman, has a great sense of style. I am always jealous of her classic, stylish ensembles.  She loves J. Crew, and Tory Burch.  She even has a job at a classy, menswear store in the area.  Biscotti are the classiest of cookies (even the name “biscotti” sounds so sophisticated!) — so I knew they would be just perfect for my amazing, stylish friend, Grace. Watch out, because she just may be the next “Cupcakes and Cashmere” (she even has Emily’s long blonde hair!).

With love,

White Chocolate Cranberry Biscotti
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup white chocolate chips
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1 cup whole almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped or sliced almonds

1 large egg white

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Line baking
sheet with parchment paper. Sift flour, baking powder and salt into
medium bowl. Mix sugar, melted butter, 3 eggs, and vanilla extract in large bowl. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and stir
with wooden spoon until well blended. Mix in almonds, white chocolate chips, and cranberries.

Divide dough in half. Using floured hands, shape each dough half into
13 1/2-inch-long, 2 1/2-inch-wide log. Transfer both logs to prepared
baking sheet, spacing apart. Whisk egg white in small bowl until foamy;
brush over top and sides of each dough log.

Bake logs until golden brown (logs will spread), about 30 minutes.
Cool logs completely on sheet on rack, about 25 minutes. Maintain oven

Transfer logs to work surface; discard parchment paper. Using
serrated knife, cut logs on diagonal into 1/2-inch-wide slices. Arrange
slices, cut side down, on same baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes. Turn
biscotti over; bake until just beginning to color, about 8 minutes.
Transfer to rack and cool.

Do ahead: Can be prepared one week ahead, though mine have kept even longer. Store in airtight container at room temperature.