If I were a bird, I'd be an Albatros; if I were a wild animal, I'd be an Elephant; if I lived in the ocean, I'd be a Minke Whale; if I were a fruit, I'd be a lemon--citrus that is tart and sour, sometimes sweet, always bold and beautiful. With sandwich cookies like these, I felt it was important to ensure that the lemon had top billing. I wanted to cookies rolled thin enough so that they supported the lemon flavour without competing. I chose to use lemon curd over buttercream because 1) I prefer the texture, juiciness and shiny yellow of lemon curd, and 2) I’m buttercream'ed out by the Polish Princess.
SPECIAL COOKIE EQUIPMENT
- (2) cookie sheets, non-stick or lined with parchment paper, a 2.25 (or in my case a 2") inch scalloped cookie cutter or a plain round cookie cutters and a 1/2'' pastry tip.
- I chose to make this cookie dough in the food processor because it gave me a chance to wiz up the sugar to make sure it was super fine
- (and I hadn't softened my butter). The dough came together quite easily.
- I divided it into thirds, and chilled it overnight.
- Lemon curd recipes are ubiquitous these days, especially with the internet, but I continue to return to the first and only lemon curd recipe for me, and the one that comes from the seminal reference book The Cake Bible . My copy is so dog-eared and is such a wreck that I really should get another copy.
- We have been teacher and student, me and this book, that to get rid of it would be like me saying goodbye to an old friend and mentor. It has answered all my cake questions and has guided me through large and complicated projects.
- I'm sure you all have books like this, but I mean it when I say that Rose taught me how to bake with The Cake Bible. I sometimes joke with Rick that I want him to lay this book over my chest when I'm dead, 'cause that's how important it's been to me over the years. Such a sentimental type...sniff...
- I digress...
ROLL, AND CUT THE COOKIES
- This step is not as straight forward as it appears. First I chose a slightly smaller cookie cutter for a couple of reasons. Each cookie would limit my calorie intake and second, I would have more to share with friends.
- Rolling out the dough was not easy either. I found that no matter how much flour I used, the dough wouldn’t stop being sticky. The kitchen wasn’t particularly hot and I didn’t understand what was going on. As I peeled the cut cookie off the counter, the shape distorted, so I felt I had to abandon this approach.
- I gathered up the remaining dough and thought about my pastry cloth, but I felt the dough was too sticky for that as well, so I put the dough back in the fridge, then pulled out my Silpat . I floured it and started over with the other pieces.
- It was then that the cookies started to cut nicely and keep their shape as I worked my way through the dough.
- Making the hole in the centre was another challenge. First I eyeballed the centre and marked it with a wooden skewer. Then I judged how accurate I was and made adjustments with the pastry tip before cutting.
- Eyeballing things for me works well (but I take no chances when making a wedding cake). Again, I digress…
BAKE THE COOKIES
- Making smaller cookies came with its own set of considerations: the baking time would be less and being that I wanted them slightly thinner than ⅛ inch, they would be vulnerable to browning more quickly. Actually, I didn’t want them to brown at all.
- With these things said, I was thinking, thinking, thinking my way through this process. I baked one tray at a time on the traditional bake setting (bottom heat element only) and I still found 350 was too hot, so I lowered the temp to 325 and baked for 2½ minutes at a time. In the end, the total baking time turned out to be about 7 minutes.
FILL THE COOKIES
- This was simple and fun.
- CONCLUSION: Overall, the Lemon Jammies weren't too sweet. The lemon curd packed a satisfying punch, and without thinking I reached for a second one. It’s all good! I’m very happy with them. And I adore the name--Lemon Jammies!
- WHAT ARE THE ALPHA BAKERS? : Here's how it works: once a week, for the next two years, 25 Alpha Bakers commit to baking their way through every recipe of Rose Levy Beranbaum's newly published The Baking Bible . Each week we post our experiences on our blog sites: our successes, our failures, our like and dislikes . The recipes are scheduled in advance so that everyone is baking the same recipe at the same time. No recipes can be shared in my Alpha Bakers Baking Bible posts due to publishing restrictions enforced by the publisher, but if you love to bake, this is a must-have book. You can see other tutorials for the same recipe at the following link The Baking Bible Alpha Bakers at http://rosesalphabakers.blogspot.ca/.