I love sour stuff. I love lemons. How can you hate lemon anything?
Lemon bars. Lemon meringue pie. Lemonade. Lemon poppyseed muffins. Liz Lemon. My interchange yellow Mini Cooper – Liz Lemon, Jr. Any kind of seafood with lemons. Greek Lemon Chicken Orzo soup. Am I forgetting anyone?
Oh yes. One new acquaintance.
Say hello to Lemon Meringue Cookies. With lemon curd filling. Oh yummmm.
Couldn’t resist this little bit of summer. Especially since I spend all day in A/C and I’m trying to avoid getting sick… And…. Lemons have a lot of vitamin C. So… These cookies are good for my health? Whatever. I’m just gonna eat ‘em. The weather’s been kind of hot though so these got wrinkly and sticky overnight :( Or maybe I didn’t beat the egg whites stiff enough. Gotta buy a large start tip for the pastry bag and try this again when the weather’s a bit cooler and drier.
I tried a couple cookies while they were cooling and they were hella good. Then, I put the lemon curd on them and my mouth went into buttery lemon sweet-tartness overdrive. Then, I stuck them in the freezer and tried a cold one and my mouth is currently experiencing puckery bliss.
Little buttons! They’re so cute.
These are kind of like mini candy/cookie version of a lemon meringue pie without the crust. I already can’t keep my family away from them… My dad, or as I sometimes call him, the Diabetic, kept reaching his hand out for more while I was assembling them and he ate like four in a span of five seconds. He straight up vacuummed the cookies. Shoomp.
Not that he needs to feel guilty about it or anything. They’re gluten-free and the meringues themselves are fat-free. The lemon curd I can’t take responsibility for… It’s fatty heaven in a jar. And the recipe yields more than you need… Unless you take into account the fact that I like to eat things out of jars with a spoon. Then, I guess it’s just enough.
BUTTER? BRING IT.
Lemon Meringue Cookies
Yield: About 25 cookies
2 large egg whites
pinch of salt
2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Place two racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 200 degrees F.Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Foil will also work in a pinch. Set the baking pans aside.
Place the egg whites (save the yolks for the curd) in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beat egg whites, on medium speed, until foamy. Add the pinch of salt and increase speed to medium-high. Slowly begin to sprinkle in the sugar. Continue to beat eggs until they become thick, glossy and hold stiff peeks. The egg whites will be the consistency of melted marshmallow.
Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Spoon into a piping bag, fitted with a large star tip. Pipe about a teaspoons worth of meringue onto the baking sheet. Stars can be close together, as they won’t spread or puff during baking. Pipe stars onto the two baking sheets until no meringue remains in the bag. Using the back of a spoon, flatten out half of the meringue stars, making them as flat as possible, but not necessarily a larger circle than the original piped star. The flattened star will become the bottom of the sandwich cookie.
Bake meringues for 2 hours, until no longer sticky , but firm and hardened.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the baking sheet before filling and sandwiching.
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
pinch of salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
Place a fine mesh strainer over a medium bowl and set aside.
In a medium pot, whisk together lemon juice, granulated sugar, eggs, yolks, and pinch of salt. Place the pot over a medium-low flame and add butter. Stir mixture with a whisk, and spatula. The spatula will help you get into the corners of the pan, ensuring that none of the curd over-cooks too much. Cook the curd until the butter is melted, and the mixture is the thickness of warm hot fudge. The whisk will begin to leave a trail of whisk marks and the mixture will have the distinct smell of lemon curd. You don’t really need to boil lemon curd… it’s probably done it if gets to the boiling stage.
Remove from the flame and immediately pour into the fine mesh strainer over the medium bowl. Press through the strainer, leaving any cooked egg bits in the strainer, and not in your beautiful curd.
Place curd in a jar, with a piece of plastic wrap placed directly over the curd. Place in the fridge until completely cold.
To fill the cookies, spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of curd onto a flattened bottom cookie. Top with a star shaped cookie. Place cookies in a single layer on a tray and place in the freezer for 20 minutes to an hour. I love these cookies right out of the freezer. You can also fill them and serve them immediately. These cookies do not last well if willed and left to sit.