Greek Lemon Cookies — not just for special occasions
Greek lemon cookies, slow-roasted grapes [photo, TWCarns]
Trying to replicate someone else’s recipe is always a chance for lots of discoveries. In this case, I was attempting to make something similar to delicate shortbreads with coconut oil, lemon and thyme from a local bakery. None of my cookies taste exactly like theirs, but I found treasures along the way. The recipe below is adapted from the internationalkitchen.com, “Shortbread cookies with olive oil and lemon.”
One big surprise for me with these cookies is how much kids like them. I thought that they would be too lemony, but not so. And the grown-ups are fond of them too, so make plenty. They are supposed to last well, but they’re always gone in a couple of days.
The basic recipe calls for:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees (the online recipe doesn’t specify, but this temperature seems to work well).
- 1 cup oil (olive in the recipe, I’ve used that, and also substituted refined organic coconut oil)
- 1 cup sugar (try substituting 1/2 cup brown sugar, + 1/2 cup white sugar)
- 1 cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
- 1 tsp baking powder (I use this amount even when making 1/2 the recipe; it just makes the cookies a bit more cake-like in texture)
- 1/3 tsp salt (try kosher or a slightly rougher salt than table salt to give more taste)
- zest of 1 lemon (medium-size lemon)
- about 4 cups of all-purpose flour (I start with 3 cups, and add 1/4 cup at a time until I have a very soft, sticky dough — usually about 3 1/2 cups altogether)
- white sugar to roll cookies in before baking (optional) OR
- sea salt flakes (like Maldon) to sprinkle on top if not rolling the cookies in sugar