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Christmas Desserts 2015

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Yes, I am aware that it’s January 9 and Christmas is long past, but I wanted to post anyway.

This year, the holidays were not the same. 

I tried my best and still got the cookies done, but some weren’t done until Christmas and some even later.

What I did finish on time were the cupcakes for my kids’ school parties.

My middle child got these:

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Don’t they look huge??  They are mini cupcakes.  I love my tiny plate!

My youngest got little stockings:

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My oldest got nothing, sadly, because he had no party at school.

I offered to show up to his class anyway, but he was horrified at the thought.

He is 12, after all….  🙂

I also made these new Apricot Cookies.

They taste more like a pastry.

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And I made Lemon Spritz Cookies for the first time.

They were a hit!

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The Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies were good, but didn’t look as pretty as I hoped:

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Speaking of funny-looking, here’s my Oreo Fudge.

I made it with fat-free condensed milk though, so it was low fat!!  Yay!

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So yummy straight out of the fridge!

And this year, I added pretzels to my Oreo and M&M bark:

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And the rest are the cookies that I make every year (hey, I know it’s repetitive, but I work so hard on them that I need to show them off!)

My little Snowflake Sugar Cookies:

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I came up with a new design this year.  The little things that make me happy…

Rainbow Cookies:

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What happened to my camera?? They look like they are underwater!

Chocolate Spritz Cookies:

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Lace Florentines:

Lace Florentines

Almond Biscotti:

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Low Fat Chocolate Chip Biscotti:

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My favorite Christmas Tree Sugar Cookies!

Christmas tree sugar cookies

And finally, although I didn’t make them in Christmas colors (gasp!), here are my chocolate dipped pretzels:

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And that is all….

I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays!

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Lemon Cake

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It’s spring, so I just had to make something lemony!!

Lemon Cake 2a

Here are some facts about this cake:

1) It’s the moistest cake I’ve ever made.

2) It’s hard to describe, other than it tastes good and has a weird texture.

Lemon Cake 4a

3) It’s the kind of cake you want to keep eating, even if you’re not sure why.

Lemon 3a

 4) It’s really easy and fun to make, until you realize you don’t have lemons, the only yogurt you have is low fat, and the only flour you have is whole wheat. That’s when you get stressed out, but you continue with what you have.

Lemon Cake 5a

I wish I could I just cut the top off and eat it all.

 5) It kills hand mixers right in the middle of mixing. (Well, at least that’s what you think, until your husband informs you that you popped a circuit, and the mixer is fine.)

Lemon Cake a

I have no idea how I had the willpower to let the glaze dry before I cut it. I did make myself feel better by eating some glaze with a spoon, though. 🙂

 6) It’s lemony, so of course my husband doesn’t particularly like it. Or at least that’s what he said when he cut his third slice.

 So now that you’ve gotten to know the cake a little better—why don’t you try it for yourself? :)

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Lemon Cake (adapted from Barefoot Contessa)

  • 1-1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain low fat yogurt
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 1 teaspoons lemon extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice (I used the kind in a bottle)

For the glaze

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into one bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, lemon extract, and vanilla.

Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

With a rubber spatula, fold the vegetable oil into the batter, making sure it’s all incorporated.

Pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan and bake  at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean.

While the cake is baking, cook the 1/3 cup lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.

When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then carefully place on a baking rack over a sheet pan.

While the cake is still warm, pour the lemon-sugar mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool.

For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake.

Light Lemon Cookies

I was away at a farm cottage this past weekend.

Great fun with friends, lots of relaxation, and no baking! 

I know, it was tough.  🙂

But before we left for the weekend, I made these cookies to bring with us:

I’ve made these many times now, and they’re awesome.

They’re tasty, and lemony, and light, and soft… And the best part?

They don’t try to sabotage my baking.  Ever!!

I definitely recommend them.

I make them fairly small, and got a batch of 44.

Are you ready for this??  They were 64 calories and 2 grams of fat each.

I know, I almost fell out of my chair too.

Oh, but there’s one problem- they go fast.

So I recommend you hide some for yourself.

Don’t worry, I won’t tell.  😉

 

Light Lemon Cookies (adapted from Cooking Light)

Cookies

  • 1/2 Cup granulated sugar
  • 7 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/3 Cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  •  1 large egg
  • 1-3/4 Cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup plain fat-free yogurt

Beat sugar and butter at medium speed until light and fluffy.

Add honey, extract, and egg; beat until well blended

In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt.  Stir with a whisk.

Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with yogurt (beginning and ending with flour mixture).

Drop 2 inches apart onto baking sheets coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Glaze

  • 1 Cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Stir powdered sugar and lemon juice with a whisk.

Brush over cookies.