Poppy-Shaped Lemon Cookies
Buttery cookies get a jolt of citrus flavor and a delicate glaze of royal icing in this take on the timeless lemon-poppy seed combination.
For the Cookies:
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
For Decorating the Cookies:
- Royal Icing, plain and/or tinted
- Poppy seeds, for sprinkling
Make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter, sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest and juice until combined. Beat in flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Wrap dough in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and roll out to a scant 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out about 18 cookies using 2 sizes of flower cookie cutters (one 3-inch and one 3 3/4-inch; fancyflours.com). Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Bake until edges just start to brown, 14 to 18 minutes. Let cool completely.
Decorate the cookies: Transfer each batch of tinted icing to a separate pastry bag fitted with a small round tip (you can use as many colors as desired). Pipe an outline of icing around the edges, then "flood" each cookie with more icing to cover. Immediately pipe a circle of small dots in the center of each cookie using a different-colored icing. Drag dots to outer edges using a toothpick to create thin lines. Repeat with remaining cookies and icing. Transfer cookies to parchment-lined baking sheets, and let dry completely, about 30 minutes.
Once cookies are set, pipe a large dot in the center of each cookie using the same tinted icing as the small dots. Gently sprinkle poppy seeds around large dot. Let dry completely.