28 May 2010

Lime Meltaways

When I was pregnant with Peter I loved lime desserts. I mean, I really really really loved them. Could not get enough of them. The more tart, the better. My husband has always had a Thing for the tart as well, so when it comes to Peter’s palate - it was no surprise to us that he will happily nosh on lemons and limes when they are offered to him. Not even so much as a scrunchy face, y’all. This boy loves his tart fruits.

Anyway, I find myself cooking and baking a lot more with limes these days, and especially now with summer approaching. There are usually at least 3-4 limes in our fridge at all times (erm, this might also have to do with the fact that we sometimes imbibe in a nice Gin and Tonic in the summer. But anyway!). I needed a dessert to bring for book club this week, but didn’t feel like running out to the grocery store for supplies, so when I opened the fridge and my eyes landed on the limes, I decided that was the route I was going. My Cookie book had a great recipe for meltaways I had wanted to try for awhile now.

This is my first time making meltaways. These are sharp, almost bitter cookies that would probably edge into the “savory” category as far as taste, if it weren’t for that thick coating of sweet, powdery sugar. Quite good, like a very lime-flavored buttery shortbread. Peter would have loved them, but I didn’t have the guts to deal with the crumbly, powdery, sticky mess that would ensue. He had to just make do with the rinds/pulp after I got done using the limes for my cookies.

Needless to say he was not really disappointed.

Lime Meltaways
(from the Martha Stewart Cookie book)

3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 c. confectioners' sugar, divided
Zest of 2 limes
3 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
1 3/4 c. + 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. coarse salt

Put butter and 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add lime zest and juice and vanilla, and mix until fluffy.

Whisk together flour, cornstarch, and salt in a bowl. Add to butter mixture, and mix on low speed until just combined.

Divide dough in half. Place each half on an 8-by-12-inch sheet of parchment paper. Roll in parchment to form a log 1 1/4 inches in diameter, pressing a ruler along edge of parchment at each turn to narrow log. Refrigerate logs until cold and firm, at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Remove parchment from logs; cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Space rounds 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake cookies until barely golden, about 13 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool slightly, 8 to 10 minutes. While still warm, toss cookies with remaining 2/3 cup sugar in a resealable plastic bag. Cookies can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature up to 2 weeks.

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