Welcome to Cookie Week! I'm not even sure how many recipes we're sending out into the world this week… five? six? Photographing cookies is way more fun than shooting pasta or salad. Especially at this time of year when we can go throw out our usual reservations about the overly cute and just go to town. Brace yourself, it's going to be a very cute week around here.
Okay, back to cookies. I love these Coconut Snowballs, they're appealing to kids and adults with their lemon-y icing, their crisp outer layer and buttery insides… and they're so cute! They really are. They look really pretty packed into a little box as a gift or stacked, pyramid-style on a cake stand at a holiday party. Unlike some Christmas cookies that have a lot of back and forth with chilling, cutting, chilling again, baking — these come together really quickly. Which make them a good one to do with kids. In the case of the batch you're looking at, thank God I had a kid helping me. Esme was with me and Maya in the studio on this day and watched me for a minute as I dipped raw cookie dough in icing and begin to roll it in coconut before piping up. "I think when we made them at home we baked them first." Doh! Why, yes we did. If you make this mistake, you may think to yourself, "Oh, I'll just bake them that way and see what happens. It's probably fine." It's not. You get burnt coconut and raw cookies. However, if you don't make a sleep deprived blunder like that, these cookies are easy peasy to make.
Let us know what you're baking this holiday. We love hearing from you!
photos by Maya Visnyei
makes 2 dozen
2 ½ cups flour
¾ cups sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 Tbsp cream cheese, softened
2 tsp vanilla
4 or 5 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp cream cheese, softened
1 ½ cup confectioner’s sugar
1 ½ cup sweetened shredded coconut
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Mix together flour, sugar, salt together in a bowl. With an electric mixer add softened butter about ¼ cup at a time until it combines with the dry ingredients. You’ll have a pebbly mixture. Add 2 Tbsp of softened cream cheese and vanilla. You’ll need to use your hands to bring the mixture together into a dough. Knead for a minute or two.
Line two cookie sheets with parchment.
Use a Tablespoon to scoop the dough, then roll it between your hands to make balls. Place on the lined sheets at least an inch apart. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Watch them carefully, you want them to firm up and turn very light gold. Any longer and they’ll be hard! Take them out and allow them to cool completely on a rack.
While they cool, mix up 3 Tbs of lemon juice with 1 Tbsp of cream cheese. Slowly add 1 ½ cups of confectioner’s sugar until you have a thick icing. Now add as much lemon juice as you need to thin it out to a glaze.
Spread your coconut in a layer on a plate. Take each cookie and swirl it into the glaze so all of the top gets covered (let excess drip off) then press it in the coconut to cover. Allow to set if you can wait.