Sunday, June 29, 2008

lemon tea cookies

lemon tea cookies


It's about time this blog lived up to its name and had another lemon recipe. These cookies are delicate, but pack a big lemony punch. The cookies themselves have good lemon flavor, but it's the icing/glaze that delivers the knockout.


Lemon Tea Cookies

Cookies:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
4 teaspoons grated lemon zest
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt

Icing/glaze:
2 cups confectioners sugar
4-5 tablespoons lemon juice
a dash of salt

To make cookies:
Preheat oven to 350F. Cream butter, 1/2 cup confectioners sugar, lemon zest and juice. Sift together flour, cornstarch and salt. Mix flour mixture into butter mixture. Allow dough to sit for 10 minutes, then shape into 1-inch balls (or use a sz 70 cookie scoop). Place dough balls 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 15-18 minutes. Cookies will look pale on top, but bottoms should be a light golden brown. Cool on cookie sheet for about 10 minutes then transfer to wire wracks and cool completely before icing.

To make icing/glaze:
Mix confectioners sugar, salt and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice together until a smooth. Adjust thickness by adding more lemon juice. Spoon icing/glaze over cooled cookies and allow to harden before storing in an airtight container.

Makes ~45 cookies

*****


Substitute the lemon zest and juice with lime, orange and even grapefruit.

For a sturdier cookie, you can substitute granulated sugar for the confectioners sugar.

Switch out the lemon flavoring with...
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract, then roll the cooled cookies in confectioners sugar mixed with cinnamon. (akin to Mexican Wedding Cookies)
-1 teaspoon rum extract and add scant 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg, ice/glaze with confectioners sugar and rum. (Egg Nog Cookies)
-1 teaspoon maple extract and add 1/2 cup of finely chopped walnuts, ice/glaze with confectioners sugar and maple syrup. (Maple Walnut Cookies)
-1 teaspoon mint extract and substitute 1/2 cup cocoa powder for 1/4 cup of cornstarch and 1/4 cup flour, drizzle cooled cookies with melted chocolate. Or substitute 2 tablespoons of fresh, finely chopped mint for the extract. (Mint Chocolate Cookies)

Size 70 scoop is the equivalent of 1 tablespoon.


lemon tea cookies


More pictures at Flickr

Saturday, June 28, 2008

the olive plan 2008 - week 26

the olive plan 2008 - week 26


Number of olives knit this week: 4 (green)
Total for the year to date: 79

Saturday, June 21, 2008

the olive plan 2008 - week 25

the olive plan 2008 - week 25


Number of olives knit this week: 2 (green)
Total for the year to date: 75

Saturday, June 14, 2008

the olive plan 2008 - week 24

the olive plan 2008 - week 24


Number of olives knit this week: 2 (1 green, 1 black)
Total for the year to date: 73

Saturday, June 7, 2008

a nice set of balls

temari balls


Before I tried knitting or bookbinding or screen printing, temari balls were my crafting obsession. These are over 10 years old (please excuse the dust).

If you are interested in learning temari, I highly recommend Diana Vandervoort's book Temari: How to Make Japanese Thread Balls (ISBN 0-87040-881-X). It has very clear instructions and is illustration heavy, just what you want in a craft book. Vandervoort has a few follow-up books with additional techniques/patterns.

More pictures at Flickr

the olive plan 2008 - week 23

the olive plan 2008 - week 23


Number of olives knit this week: 3 (green)
Total for the year to date: 71

Sunday, June 1, 2008

faux kalua pork

kalua pork sandwich


Growing up on the mainland, it was always a treat when relatives came to visit from Hawaii. They would bring the standard candies and t-shirts, but also foods like laulau, poi and kalua pig. Sure, chocolate covered macadamia nuts and neon yellow and red coconut balls were great, but it was that shredded pork that was like candy to me.

Though nothing quite replicates pork cooked in a traditional imu, this recipe satisfies my cravings. It's so easy. Waiting for it to finish cooking so you can dig in? Not so easy.

Faux Kalua Pork

~2-3 lb. pork shoulder roast
kosher salt (or Hawaiian salt, if you have it)
ground pepper
water

Preheat oven to 350F. Generously salt and pepper the roast on all sides. Place roast in roasting pan, fat side up, and fill pan with water to about halfway up the side. Cover pan with aluminum foil (cover tightly, don't leave a vent). Cook in oven for 1 hour at 350F, then reduce temperature to 300F and continue cooking for another 4 hours. Remove roast from oven and shred meat. Season meat with additional salt and pepper to taste.

~4-6 servings.

*****


This recipe freezes well so consider making two roasts since you'll have the oven on for such a long time. If freezing a portion, add some of the cooking liquid to the containers to keep the meat moist during reheating.

The cooking liquid can be used for broth. Strain the liquid, refrigerate, then scoop off the solidified fat. Use within a day or freeze. Remember to taste the broth for saltiness and adjust your recipe accordingly.

Add your favorite barbecue sauce for some delicious and messy sandwiches. Serve with fresh salsa and and a squeeze of lime on tortillas. I like mine with salt and pepper, topped with carmelized onions, on a french bread roll.

pulled pork sandwich


More pictures at Flickr