Have you ever eaten at a Maggiano’s? They have these little cookies called Vera’s Lemon Cookies. They are a crescent moon shape with a little glaze on top and I could eat 1,000 of them. They are dangerous because they are so light and airy and pop-able. I mean you can just pop a whole one into your mouth. Everyone goes for the tiramisu or the chocolate cake but I’m telling you those little cookies are like heaven.
Of course, to get them I had to go to Maggiano’s so it was easy to monitor my over-indulgence. Then, one time when my in-laws came for a visit, my mother-in-law brought along some cookies she had made. Lemon cookies. With a lemon glaze. They aren’t the exact same… they might be better? I don’t know, tough call. The Maggiano cookies are a little more crispy but airy and these are a little more cakey. Do you know how much I love cake? I was so excited (and scared) to realize I could make these at home. Not only that, they are a Giada De Laurentiis recipe. A recipe that is in a cookbook I already owned! I could have been making them for years. Oh well, I can make them now. If you want the exact recipe click here. Otherwise, I have the recipe listed below with some really minor preparation tweaks.
I make these with my girls a lot because we often make them as teacher gifts. The last time we made them was for their dance teacher. Here they are juicing the lemons.
And, it makes a lot of cookies. One batch can cover a lot of people. I would guess it makes about 50 – 55 cookies. I use my cookie scooper so they all come out about the same size.
These aren’t difficult to make but you do have to invest some time. There is a lot of “inactive” time.
But, all that time is totally worth it. Your friends, family, co-workers and/or teachers will be very impressed!
Thank you Giada for this delicious treat and thanks to my mother-in-law for bringing them into my life!
Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze
2 ½ c Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Salt
1 stick Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
2 c Sugar
15 oz container Whole-Milk Ricotta Cheese
Zest of 1 Lemon
3 T fresh Lemon Juice
1 ½ c Powdered Sugar
Zest of 1 Lemon
3 T fresh Lemon Juice
Preheat oven to 375
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together using an electric mixer until light and fluffy
Beat in the eggs one at a time
Add the ricotta and lemon juice and beat until well combined
Using a rubber spatula stir in the lemon zest until evenly distributed (I find that zest gets stuck on my beaters so it is easier to stir it in. That way, the zest is in the batter and not stuck on my beaters).
Stir in the dry ingredients.
Line your baking sheets with parchment paper.
Scoop out batter and place dough about 2 inches apart. I use a cookie scooper to ensure cookies will be the same size.
Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden on the edges.
Let cool on the cookie sheet for about 20 minutes.
When completely cooled, prepare the glaze.
In a small bowl, stir powdered sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice until you have a smooth glaze.
Dip each cookie into the glaze. While still holding the cookie upside-down, kind of tilt it around so the glaze covers the top of the cookie evenly. Let any excess drip back into the bowl.
Place glazed cookies on a rack until the glaze is dry and has hardened, about 2 hours.
Store the cookies in an airtight container.
Like I said, I love to give these as gifts. I buy treat boxes and use parchment paper and bakers twine to package everything up. You can even write your “Thank You” right on top of the box if you want.
These are truly a delight!