Total: 3 hr 40 min(includes chilling and cooling times)
Active: 40 min
1 of 24 servings
These cookies are bright with sweet lemony flavor, thanks to plenty of lemon zest, lemon juice and a generous coating of confectioners’ sugar. The key to success with these cookies is chilling the dough before rolling it into balls. This helps slow down the spreading, giving the tops a chance to crinkle and crack during baking. Tossing the chilled dough balls in granulated sugar before coating in confectioners’ sugar also helps the coating adhere, so the cookies are sweet and crunchy on the outside and soft and chewy inside.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
Beat 1 cup of the granulated sugar and the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed, about 2 minutes.
Add the egg and beat until incorporated. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice and food coloring if using and beat until incorporated. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating until just combined. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Put the confectioners' sugar in a small bowl and the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar in another small bowl. Using a 1-tablespoon scoop, portion the dough and roll into balls. Toss each ball in the granulated sugar, then in the confectioners' sugar, coating it generously and thoroughly. Arrange the balls about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets (you should have 24 balls). Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Position the oven racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Bake until the cookies spread, the tops crack and the edges are firm, 14 to 16 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
When measuring flour, we spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off the excess. (Scooping directly from the bag compacts the flour, resulting in dry baked goods).
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