Saturday, March 17, 2018

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies
Happy St. Patrick's Day! This morning I baked 3 dozen Key Lime Shamrock Cookies. This recipe is almost the same one I made in 2016 except I replaced lime for key lime, and added key lime juice in the royal icing as well. The key lime juice and zest really bring out a fresh flavor that reminds me spring is almost here, and the cookies smell and taste great. The recipe is adapted from Sweetopia (link below), but I reduced the sugar by 1/2 cup and just added more zest. The cookies are tender, with a balanced lime flavor from the juice and zest and are not too sweet. I purchased the pretty Shamrock plate from Party City. I share the recipe below.

Yield: 3 dozen cookies.

Mini Shamrocks and Lucky Coins

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies
2 cups (4 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened and each stick cut into 8 cubes

2 Large Eggs

1 1/2 cups Granulated Sugar

5 cups All Purpose Flour (I use King Arthur)

Zest of 3 Key Limes

3 tablespoons Freshly Squeezed Key Lime Juice

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

Key Lime Shamrock Cookies

Medium sized Shamrocks
Cut each stick of butter into 8 pieces.

Sift flour and salt in large bowl and combine with whisk or spatula; put aside.

Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl of an electric mixer with paddle attachment on low to medium speed. Mix until incorporated, about 1 minute.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix again for 5-10 seconds more.

Shamrock close-up

Shamrocks close-up
Add eggs one at a time. Scrape down bowl with spatula and mix again for another 5 seconds.

Add key lime zest and key lime juice and mix for 30-45 seconds.

Slowly add flour mixture and mix on low speed for 1-2 minutes.

When dough clumps around paddle attachment it is ready.

Form dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and cool in fridge for 1-2 hours or overnight. I was pressed for time and put my dough in the freezer for 45 minutes.

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Shamrocks close-up

Shamrocks close-up
Take 1/4 of the dough (leave the rest of the dough covered in the fridge), and place it between two sheets of parchment paper. With rolling pin roll out to desired thickness, and cut out shapes.

Repeat rolling the dough and cutting shapes until you use it all.

Place shamrock shapes on parchment lined baking sheets and space apart 2 inches.

Tip: Put cookies in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking. They hold their shape when you do this.

Bake cookies for 9-13 minutes, or until edges are slightly browned. My cookies baked in 13 minutes.

Tip: Since oven temperatures vary check the cookies at the 10 minute mark and adjust baking time accordingly.

Let cookies cool in baking sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely, about 1 hour.

Let cookie sheets cool completely before you bake again.

Tip: I put the cookie sheets in the freezer for a few minutes.

Repeat until you have baked all the cookies.

Shamrocks close-up

Sprinkles are so much fun to decorate cookies with!
Royal Icing
4 Egg Whites

4 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

1 teaspoon Fresh Key Lime Juice

1-4 teaspoons Water, as needed

6 cups Powdered/Confectioners' Sugar, sifted

Shamrock close-up

Border on a cookie
In a large bowl, sift powdered sugar; set aside.

In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer the egg whites and lemon juice mixture to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment and mix on high for 1-2 minutes.

Add key lime juice and mix on high for 30 seconds.

With mixer speed on low, slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

If needed, you add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Only use the amount of water you need.

Lots of sprinkles to choose from makes decorating the cookies more fun.

St. Patrick's Sprinkle Mix I put together for this recipe.
Watch the Joy of Baking (link below) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing.

If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link.

I separate the icing in plastic containers with lids according to the amount of colors I need for tinting.

I use Americolor Soft Gel Paste Food Color in Green and Yellow. I made two shades of green for color variation.

Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.

Shamrock shapes on dough. You can clearly see zest in each one.

About the chill the Key Lime Cookie Dough in the fridge.
I transfer the icing immediately into Squeeze Bottles since it starts crusting quickly.

If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water into squeeze bottle and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Be sure to test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

Warning: Too much water will cause the color to bleed so try to avoid having to do this by keeping the icing covered at all times when you are not using it.

As you are icing the cookies, use a paintbrush or cookie stick to reach edges and use tip of cookie stick or a toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

I place a paper towel under a wire rack and also use a baking sheet when I decorate the cookies. I run out of wire racks quickly so I do both.

In addition to putting together my own St. Patrick's Sprinkles Mix, I use various sanding sugars, sugar pearls, jimmies, etc... Variety is key.

Let the cookies dry overnight.

For the citrus sugar cookie recipe, please visit Sweetopia:

For the Royal Icing recipe and video tutorial, please visit:

For more information on St. Patrick and the history of St. Patrick's Day, please visit:


-Sophia/Two Frys

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