In our February/March 2017 issue, Jessica Soffer wrote movingly about her Baghdad-born father’s battle with cancer, and how she coped by nursing his ailing potted lemon tree, named Maralyn, back to life. Fruit from a revived Maralyn informed these cookies, based on Middle Eastern sweets Soffer’s dad, Sasson, enjoyed as a boy. While it’s fine to top these cookies with store-bought candied lemon peel, all you need to make your own is a few lemons, a cup of sugar, and a little planning to dry them properly. Check out our best cookies to bake for the holidays here.
Featured in: "My Life With Marilyn, the Family Lemon Tree."
For the cookies:
- 2 cups plus 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. ground cardamom
- 1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
- 16 Tbsp. unsalted butter (2 sticks), softened
- 1⁄3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
- 1⁄4 cup minced, candied lemon peel (store-bought or homemade, plus more for garnish
For the glaze:
- 1 confectioners’ sugar
- Juice of ¾ of a medium lemon (3 Tbsp.)
- Pinch of salt