Category Archives: Cookies

Lemon Pecan Cornmeal Cookies

Fresh lemons were a special-occasion ingredient in Smoky Mountain kitchens of old. In everyday cooking and baking, the flavor might be mimicked with apple cider vinegar or buttermilk. But during the Christmas holidays, lemon zest and juice were used in cookies, cakes, and pies. This simple butter cookie recipe – perfect for gift-giving – uses not only fresh lemon zest and juice, but also locally produced yellow self-rising cornmeal and chopped nuts. The nuts were black walnuts or hickory nuts in older mountain recipes, but today, most cooks bake with pecans. Corn was a crop more easily grown than wheat in mountain soil. So sometimes you find cookie recipes from the mountains contained a little cornmeal, adding texture and that little something extra!

Makes about 36 2-inch cookies

Prep time: 15 minutes

Bake time: 8 to 10 minutes

Lemon Pecan Cornmeal Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup The Old Mill White Unbleached Plain Flour

1/2 cup The Old Mill Self-Rising Yellow Cornmeal

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg, separated

1 small lemon

1/2 cup finely chopped pecans

Directions:

1. Place a rack in the center of the oven, and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Place the flour and cornmeal in a small bowl, and stir to combine. Set aside.

3. Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl, and with an electric mixer beat on medium speed until the mixture is creamy, about 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside the egg white. Place the egg yolk in the bowl with the butter and sugar, and beat on low until just combined, 30 seconds. Set aside.

4. Zest the lemon so you get about 1 teaspoon lemon zest. Add this to the butter and sugar mixture. Cut the lemon in half and juice it to yield 2 teaspoons. Add the lemon juice to the butter and sugar mixture. Add the flour and cornmeal mixture to the butter and sugar mixture, and beat on low speed until just combined and the mixture comes together into a ball, 1 minute.

5. Place the pecans in a shallow bowl. Pinch off 1-inch pieces of dough, roll into balls with your hands, dip into the egg white, and dredge in pecans to loosely coat. Place the balls of dough on a baking sheet, spaced about 2 inches apart. With a fork press down twice on each ball to flatten it. Repeat with the remaining dough. You will need to bake one pan at a time.

6. Place the pan in the oven, and bake until the cookies are deeply golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove with a spatula to a wire rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining dough.


How to make icebox cookies: Roll the dough into a 1 1/2-inch wide log and wrap in waxed or parchment paper. Place in the refrigerator to chill 1 hour. Brush the log with the reserved egg white and dredge in pecans. Slice into 1/4-inch rounds, and bake until golden brown, 7 to 9 minutes. You can omit the egg white and pecans, if desired, for lemon cornmeal icebox cookies.

Chocolate Chip Rye Cookies

Rye makes a very nice flour, and it is surprising how well it works in recipes that call for whole wheat flour. Using it to update a classic recipe like this helps to expand the uses of rye flour. These cookies freeze well, so you can make them in advance and bring them out an hour before serving.

Chocolate Chip Rye Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup Old Mill Rye Flour

1 cup Old Mill Unbleached White Flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

3/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup (6 oz) semisweet or bitter-sweet chocolate chunks or chips

1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Directions:

Place the rye flour, unbleached flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.

Place the butter and sugars in a large bowl, and beat with an electric mixer on low speed until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, beating on low speed until all the flour has been added and the dough is smooth. Fold in the chocolate and pecans. Place the dough in the refrigerator at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Scoop dough on to un-greased baking pans using a 1-inch scoop. Place one pan at a time in the oven and bake until golden brown but still a little soft in the center, 9 to 11 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough. Let cookies cool on a rack until time to serve. These freeze well.

Brown Sugar Shortbread

Brown Sugar Shortbread

A sturdy shortbread that packs and ships well, this shortbread can be made in a large pan and cut into bars or squares. The brown sugar adds a more old-fashioned flavor, and this is how shortbread was made in the South.
Makes 16 bars or squares
Prep: 10 to 15 minutes
Bake: 35 to 45 minutes
Ingredients:
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold
Cinnamon topping (optional):
1 teaspoon granulated sugar mixed with dash of cinnamon
Directions:
1. Place a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
2. Place the flour, brown sugar, and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine. Cut the butter into tablespoons and scatter in the processor bowl. Pulse 15 to 20 times, or until the butter is incorporated and the dough starts to come together but is still crumbly.
3. Press the dough into the bottom of an ungreased 8- or 9-inch square metal baking pan. Prick the dough about 12 times with a fork. Place the pan in the oven.
4. Bake until the shortbread is golden brown, from 35 to 45 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven. If desired, sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar over the top. Cut the shortbread into squares while warm. Let cool completely before packing or serving.

Refrigerator Lace Cookies

Refrigerator Lace Cookies

This recipe is from American Cookie, by Anne Byrn. Want more? Buy Anne’s newest cookbook here or call us at 877-653-6455 and one of our Old Mill Customer Service operators will be happy to order it for you! You can also find her other cookbooks here!
Makes 4 dozen 2- 2 ½-inch cookies
Prep: 15 to 20 minutes
Chill: 12 to 24 hours
Bake: 8 to 10 minutes
Ingredients:
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
½ cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 large egg
1 tablespoon whole milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ teaspoons lemon zest (from 1 medium lemon)
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
Directions:
1. Place the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter in a large bowl, and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until the mixture is well blended, 1 minute. Beat in the egg, milk, vanilla, and lemon zest, until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the oats on low speed, just till combined. Set aside.
2. Place the flour, salt, and baking soda in a medium-size bowl, and stir to combine with a fork. Add to the oats mixture in two batches, beating on low just until the flour is blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
3. Place a 16- to 17-inch piece of waxed paper on a countertop. Drop spoonfuls of dough lengthwise on the paper, making a line about 12 inches long. Fold paper lengthwise over dough and make a log, rolling to about 1 ¾ to 2 inches in diameter and 13 to 14 inches long. Place the log in the fridge for 12 to 24 hours.
4. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400°F.
5. Remove the dough from the fridge, and place on a cutting surface. Remove the waxed paper. Cut the dough into ¼-inch slices and place on the pan 2 ½ inches apart. Place a pan in the oven.
6. Bake the cookies until the edges are golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the pan no longer than 1 minute. Remove to the rack with a metal spatula and cool. Store in a tightly covered container for up to 1 week.