Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

Lemon loveliness on a beautiful Spring day.

Happy Bunny Day! Ostara, Spring Equinox, Easter – however you celebrate it. I hope your day of  celebrating is wonderful.

The weather today is beautiful. Extremely unseasonal for early April, but who’s complaining? I’m not that’s for sure. I was able to wear my pretty white dress and my open toe shoes and not feel like my legs are freezing off. Spring makes me happy. Now all I need is some grass to squish my toes with and I’ll be set.

I really think that lemon in a baked good is a gift from the gods. They knew it was good and had to pass it along to us somehow. Lemon and sugar plus butter (vegan of course) = heaven. You’re really going to want to bake these. Why? Because they’re damned good (yes, I said damned). Sweet and yummy and the lemon bites the back of your tongue in this amazing, sweet, zesty, shivery way.

Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

3 1/2 tsp lemon zest (from 2 or 3 lemons)

1 cup Earth Balance

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups sugar

Egg replacement equivalent of 1 egg

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 tbs poppy seeds. Extra for sprinkling.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a small saucepan, bring lemon juice to a simmer and cook until it’s reduce by almost half. Add 1/2 cup of Earth Balance. Blend until melted, then take off heat.

Stir together 1/2 cup of sugar and 1 1/2 tsp of lemon zest. With your hands, rub the lemon zest and sugar together until well combined. The sugar will start to become a very pale yellow. Set aside.

Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Cream the remaining Earth Balance and 1 cup of sugar together on medium speed in electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or on medium speed of a hand held mixer). Mix in egg replacer and lemon butter mixture until pale – about 2 or 3 minutes. Mix in vanilla and leftover lemon zest. Add flour and poppy seeds.

Roll spoonfuls of the cookie dough together to form 1 1/2 in balls (approximately); roll them in the sugar/lemon zest mixture. Place them about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Press each ball with the bottom of a glass until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle lightly with poppy seeds.

Bake until browned around the bottom edges – about 10-12 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and let cool completely.