Today = First day of Summer! Summer time = Fruit time.
Whether it’s smoothies, popsicles, fruit tarts, or even a juicy apple or peach as a mid-day snack, fruit is clutch in the summer.
One way I love incorporating fruit into my baking is by mixing fresh fruit juice with powdered sugar and covering all baked goods in sight with it. OK, so that’s an exaggeration. But after incorporating Lemon Shortbread Squares (which include a lemon glaze) into my yearly Christmas cookie rotation 2 years ago, I started looking for more citrusy baked goods.
After finding a recipe for some orange icebox cookies that were filled with coconut and covered with chocolate, I made some tweaks and thus was born my Orange Creamsicle Cookies.
Everyone loves these cookies. I took them to T-Man’s work barbeque on Friday and I kid you not, they were gone less than 15 minutes after our arrival. People passed up burgers and sausages for these puppies! That’s when you know they’re good. They’ve got orange zest running all up in their veins, and a hint of vanilla gives them that yummy creamsicle flavor that makes you think of popsicles in the summer time!
So until I figure out how to make homemade creamsicles, let this recipe tide you over.
Orange Creamsicle Cookies
based loosely on Food Network’s Toasted Coconut and Orange Icebox Cookies
(Makes 2-3 dozen cookies, depending on size)
2 cups all-purpose flour (I have also replaced 1 or both cups with gluten-free garbanzo bean flour and LOVED the result)
2 tablespoons packed orange zest
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling cookies
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
juice and zest of 1/2 orange
~2 cups powdered sugar
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. While waiting for the oven to preheat, combine all the dry ingredients (flour, orange zest, and salt) and mix until incorporated.
2. Beat together butter and sugars until completely combined and somewhat airy. Add the white and brown sugars and beat until it looks like wet sand. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until just combined. Next, slowly add the flour mixture a little bit at a time and keep mixing until combined.
3. Lay down some plastic wrap and put half of the dough on top of each piece. Shape the dough into 2 logs of decent width and length. You don’t want your cookies to be too small! Roll logs up in the plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. You can probably freeze them for even longer if you want to prepare these days before you actually bake them.
4. Cut the logs into 1/2-inch slices. Roll the cookies in sugar to coat and shake off excess. Arrange on a baking sheet, leaving 1/2-inch between the cookies. Bake until set and golden on the edges, about 15 to 18 minutes. Remove to cooling racks to cool completely.
5. While cookies are baking, whisk juice and zest of 1/2 an orange with 1 cup of powdered sugar. Keep adding powdered sugar until glaze thickens. It shouldn’t be runny, but it shouldn’t be thick or chunky either.
6. Drizzle glaze over cookies and set out to let the icing harden (either at room temperature, or in the fridge) for at least 20 minutes. Then, enjoy!