This season's bestowal of the citrus fruit is most thoughtful indeed. The brightly colored exterior and sweet fragrance of lemon, grapefruit and the adorably petite clementine is a much needed diversion from the bitter ire of winter's chill. Additionally, I find the sweet and sour nectar of said fruit to be a delightful reprieve from the heavy, spice laden dishes that have so graciously added comfort to our bellies and meat to our bones. But alas, it is time to cleanse our palates in preparation for lighter fare and warmer winds. Spring is sure to follow, as a wise man once said.
To help you ring in this tart new year I bring you a simple cream sandwich. A pecan speckled cookie holds together a lemon infused center lightly sweetened with honey and peppered with vanilla bean. Although a frozen treat, its flavors are light and calming, sure to comfort you at the end the day.
If you are fortunate enough to lay your mitts on the golden jewel of winter, the meyer lemon, I implore you to use them in this recipe. They are slightly sweeter than the traditional lemon, not to mention their bouquet is beautifully pungent.
Have a most blessed week my friends. To the market you go, posthaste!
Almond Pecan Cookies (makes 12-3inch cookies)
- 1 3/4 cup almond flour ( I used Honeyville)
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 TBS coconut oil at room temperature
Preheat oven to 350F.
Pulse dry ingredients in a food processor. Add honey and oil and process until a crumbly dough forms. Pat into a ball and set aside.
Lay a piece of parchment paper on the counter. Place your dough onto the parchment and lay another piece of parchment on top of the dough (this prevents the dough from sticking to the rolling pin). Gently roll the dough to a 1/4inch thickness and cut dough using a 3inch cookie/biscuit cutter. Repeat until you have cut 12 cookies.
Place cookies onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely on the baking sheet.
Once cooled, wrap cookies in plastic wrap and place in the freezer.
Lemon-Vanilla Cream Center (makes about 2 cups or 6 rounds)
- 2 cups raw cashews, soaked (Soaking the cashews helps them blend more smoothly. To soak, simply place cashews in filtered water for an hour or so. If you are pressed for time 10 minutes will suffice as long as you have a powerful blender)
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 TBS water
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped and pod discarded
- 1/4 tsp salt
**You will need 6 ramekins or some other kind of vessel with a BASE (the top of the ramekin is wider than the base) that is about 3 inches wide. I used the Le Crueset 7oz ramekins. These should work fine! Cut 6 strips of parchment paper 2 inches wide and 8 inches long. (You will use this to pull out the frozen creams, the parchment is so helpful!). Place the parchment into the ramekins, spray inside with non-stick spray and set aside.
Place all ingredients into a high speed blender and blend until very smooth. This may take a few minutes depending on the power of your blender.
Pour 1/3 cup of cream mixture into each ramekin. Place in the freezer for at least 4 hours or overnight.
When you are ready to assemble the sandwiches remove the cookies and ramekins from the freezer. Allow the ramekins to sit for a couple of minutes and then pull the parchment to release the cream center. Once removed, sandwich the cream center between two of the frozen cookies. Repeat with remaining ramekins.
You may serve or wrap in plastic and return sandwiches to the freezer. Enjoy!