This blog post is dedicated to fiercely protecting the things in life that make you feel fulfilled and light. Like these Strawberry Lemongrass Linzer Cookies!
Do what you love.
I think this is a statement that both motivates and plagues millennials. We’re prompted to find a job we’re passionate about, because we’ll be plugging every waking hour into it. There is little to no “clocking off.” Nothing is ever as finished or as polished as it could be if you just spent more time with it. Working in digital media, work duties extend to the weekend and after-hours at home.
I had this on my mind recently, as I was tasked with putting together a staff bio for myself at the agency where I work. Before even beginning the process, I had the sinking feeling that everything that makes me “me” has been fading away.
It’s difficult to balance a relationship and friendships on my current schedule, let alone pursue the silly and fun extra things that have contributed to forming the unique individual who was drawn to the energy of New York almost three years ago.
I’ve found that it’s important to understand the distinction that doing what I love as a career won’t necessarily make me feel fulfilled, even if it is a key part of the equation. The fun side projects and shenanigans are just as important for well-rounded contentment.
My big New Year gift to myself will be truly carving out time for one or two things that are just for me… like updating this blog, which I haven’t done since October!
These Linzer Cookies are laden with sweet Brins Strawberry Lemongrass Jam and have a crumbly-yet-chewy consistency that only gets better as the cookies age. I adapted this recipe from a King Arthur Flour recipe that includes both AP flour and almond flour.
These little cookies pack a fruity punch. I suggest adding orange zest to the dough for an even more flavorful cookie.
Scroll down for the recipe!
Strawberry Lemongrass Linzer Cookies
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup AP flour
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 cup Brins Strawberry Lemongrass jam
- In a stand mixer, beat the butter, sugar, and cinnamon until light and fluffy.
- Incorporate egg yolk and vanilla, and beat until combined
- Whisk together flour, almond flour, and salt. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into the whipped butter mixture.
- Form dough into a disk and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Chill for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Roll out dough until about 1/4″ thick. Cut into circle shapes. Using a smaller flower-shaped cookie cutter, cut flower windows in half of the circles.
- Bake for 10 minutes, or until the edges are slightly brown.
- Let cool. Once cool, dollop some jam onto the cookies and sandwich with the flower halves. They taste great immediately, but taste even better if you let them sit for a few hours. Give the jam some time to soak into the cookie!
Recovering from a two day dessert festival and reveling in its sugar coma aftermath, I feel like I didn’t do as much baking as usual this week.
To keep track of my pastry progress, my friend thinks that I should include a butter count on my blog… some sort of widget that shows the number of butter sticks that I use during the week. What do you think? The count this week would be rather low, but I managed to throw together some of these alluring vanilla almond orange cloud cookies from a Joy the Baker recipe.
After fighting through the smog of your daily grind, it’s possible to recognize that you’ve actually been on cloud nine the whole time. Busyness can distract you from the fact that you are actually achieving your goals and (somehow) managing to squeeze in some fun! This week, between phone meetings and scrambling to feel like I accomplished everything on my March to-do list, I was able to see Samantha Bee live in the studio, indulge in a vegan rainbow latte from the ultra adorable Chinatown nook The Good Sort, and hunt down an art opening featuring Yoshitomo Nara, probably my favorite artist of all time. I’ve even gotten closer to a tattoo decision that I’ve been deliberating on (sorry, mom). Next week is looking pretty snazzy as well, with the opening of Eggslut (assemble, brunch gang!) and a film screening at the Japan Society.
Make a batch of these cloud cookies and celebrate the fact that your life is slowly but surely drifting in the right direction. Each mouthful is like taking a bite of a flawless fluffy cumulus cloud that is catching the spring sunlight in just the right way… You know the clouds; the perfect ones that hover over your picnic blanket in Bryant Park.
If you like chewy cookies, this is THE cookie for you. The almond paste gives the cookies a marzipan-y level of chewiness, and the orange zest brightens up the almond flavor. It was invigorating to work with oranges instead of the typical lemon for a change.
Scroll down for the recipe!
Vanilla Almond Orange Cloud Cookies
This is Joy The Baker’s recipe, with a few slight alterations! (makes 18 to 21 cookies)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 10 ounces almond paste
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- powdered sugar (for dusting)
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare two non-stick baking sheets and set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix together granulated sugar, orange zest, and vanilla extract.
- Place sugar in the bowl of an electric stand mixer, using a paddle attachment. Add the almond paste and salt. Beat on medium speed creating a crumbly sugar and almond mixture.
- While almond mixture is combining in the mixer, place two egg whites in a small bowl. Whisk with a fork until loose and frothy. This will help in pouring the egg whites into the mixer. If the eggs are unbeaten, the eggs won’t pour smoothly.
- With the mixer on medium speed, gradually pour the egg whites in to the crumbly almond and sugar mixture. Beat until a smooth paste is formed. Add the almond extract and beat to combine.
- Scoop batter by the tablespoonful onto the prepared baking sheet (it will be too sticky to roll). Sprinkle with powdered sugar.
- Bake cookies for 25 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned on top (mine took a little longer). Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the pan before transferring to a cooling rack.