Thursday, February 18, 2010

Memories of sunshine - Strawberry Mojito Cookies


Every summer I think about the previous winter and its shivering and bundled layers and it seems like an odd novelty. Boots?  Hats and mittens?  Silliness.  And that's because I forget just how cold 20 degrees Fahrenheit can be... or 10... or zero.  From inside a sundress, it seems impossible to think of 2 pairs of socks.  But nonetheless here we are, peeking our heads out of our wool and triple-insulated down igloos at each other on the streets with watery, wind-struck eyes.  And now it seems impossible to think of seeing people with bare toes on the sidewalks.  The sign at the old diner boasting about "air conditioned" seating sounds odd, like maybe in 1956 they needed that sort of thing, but certainly not these days.  Buried under a crust of Chicago snow, summer seems like decades ago right now.

Which is why I needed to make these cookies.  Not simply because having an excuse to turn the oven on in my drafty kitchen, but because they're Mojito-inspired.  And Mojitos are the sort of thing you drink when you're outside in weather that doesn't require you have some purpose to be outside, other than to "enjoy" it. 

So to keep alive the notion of sunshine on bare skin, and kind breezes... even sunburns and humidity-frizz-hair, I had to make these.  To remind me that the boots will go back in the closet for the next half of the year, when I'll stumble across them while searching for a rogue sandal and they will seem alien to that version of me: a relic, and I'll marvel at how precious they seemed just a few months before.

Recipe: Goodbye Winter Strawberry Mojito Cookies

For the cookies...
1/2 pound unsalted butter (softened)
2 1/3 cups AP flour
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg (room-temperature is best)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt

For the glaze...
1 pint fresh strawberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup white rum
1/2 cup water
Small handful fresh mint leaves, minced fine

What to do with it all...
Cookies: Beat together butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add all other ingredients except flour and beat until well combined.  Reduce mixer to low and add flour slowly until well combined.  Divide dough in half and wrap and put into fridge to chill for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Remove one half and place on a well-floured rolling surface.  Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness.  Cut out cookies with about a 3-inch cutter (or use a tin can!) and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat 1 inch apart.  Bake on mid or upper rack for 6 - 8 minutes or until golden.  Repeat with second half of dough.  Set aside cookies to cool.

Glaze: In a medium saucepan, heat all ingredients except mint on medium, stirring occasionally until strawberries are soft and giving off color into liquid.  If there is too little liquid, just add a little more water.  Puree mixture with emulsion blender or standard blender and return to saucepan.  Simmer until thick.  Allow to cool slightly, then stir in your minced mint.  Add a tea spoon's worth of glaze to each cookie and spread until shiny and lovely.

Finish with powdered sugar if desired.

Hello Spring.  Oh how I missed you.


  1. These are delicious looking cookies. I have all the ingredients ready and waiting to be converted into this cookie. Thx for sharing...Cheer up - Spring is just around the corner :)

  2. Turso LesMannFebruary 19, 2010

    These look so good in your photos, I must make them. It goes on the list for this weekend. Certainly will be as good as your Peas and Carrots w/ Bacon dish that I made previously.

    Also I thought you may enjoy this short cooking video:

  3. While I'm currently wearing two pairs of socks & bunny slippers to keep my feet warm, these cookies look & sound absolutely delicious & I must try! Thanks for sharing & also such great photography :-) Have a great weekend!

  4. Ohhh!!
    summer 2010! Roll on!
    this post has made life seem so much brighter beyond all this snow!
    i may make these for our beach picnic ths year!
    great post! :)

  5. Lovely idea. Just when we need in this dark and cold month. Thanks! Maybe they can be made with frozen strawberries? I don't think I can buy any fresh strawberries at the moment that aren't flown from around the world. :(

  6. So what I am thinking is, why don't all mojitos come with a cookie garnish?

  7. love this ... i think i might send it over to my mom. she'll try it out. im not brave enough

    did you get a new blog design?

    i think you did... looks great!

  8. I think I just visited summer - thanks for that!
    I love turning my oven on - just to heat up the kitchen ;-)

  9. These should be prescribed to all people (including me) who have summer-sickness. Although I think there would be a lot of hypochondriacs around faking depression for delish cookies...

  10. Wow. These look great! I'm with you on the Chicago winters...they're a continual beat-down! Hopefully spring's on the way soon!

  11. Oh I totally feel the same way you do. We get those painful numbing below zero winter days a lot in nyc too. Being the walking city that it is, I want to DIE everytime I step foot outside from November - March.

    So cute, the cocktail inspired photo! You always post some of the most creatively styled photos on your blog!

    Also, I'm in love with a glaze made with rum. Strawberries are pretty crappy around here for the moment, but soon I shall try these out!

  12. And just what happened to the missing cookie in the first photo, young lady?? Hmmm?

    Please don't talk about impending spring. It means my summer is disappearing :( Well, I am looking at temps around 40 deg C in the next few days, so perhaps I'll be praying for winter soon enough.

  13. Too charming! This recipe and post are adorable, and a lovely celebration of sweet delights.

  14. I feel like I'm wearing sunglasses and flip flops as I attempt to lick the cookies off my computer screen. Meanwhile, it's a monochromatic gray outside my window.

    Thanks for the mini vacay :)

  15. Sorry If I missed something, but how much flour goes in this? They Look delicious.


  16. Ah, see, I was just checking to see if anyone was paying attention! :P You're right, Mike, I did leave out one *ahem* minor ingredient... the flour! I've corrected the recipe and thank you for pointing this out! :)

  17. YUM! Definitely adding these to my baking queue!


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