From September 18, 1942 comes this shared sugar cookie recipe with buttermilk, lard, nutmeg, and grated lemon rind. I love sugar cookies and had such high hopes for this one. It turned out more like a fluffy cake cookie (it’s light) – probably because I halved the recipe ~ but how do you halve 3 eggs? I didn’t need so many sugar cookies that I’d have to eat them for days and the original recipe with 4 cups flour seemed like it would take over the kitchen. In the end I used 2 eggs but halved the rest of the ingredients. And I learned that the little notation of 350* underneath the 400* baking instructions actually did mean 350* because good gracious (!) 400* cooked these faster than I expected.
In case you’re trying to stick with the original recipe, you’ll need 1 cup of lard and will need to “use Gold Medal flour, Crescent is too dry”. I used King Arthur flour, it was most definitely not too dry. I used butter instead of the cup of lard.
I’m fully prepared to never bake these again. Not because the cookies tasted badly, they didn’t at all. They actually tasted like light lemon cake cookies, more so because I used a powdered sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest glaze over the top. But the dough was simply a pain in my ass. Mrs. Weir warned me: “these are very soft”. No doubt! Super-sticky & messy cookie dough made it nearly impossible to roll into balls even after cooling in the fridge for an hour before handling it. I ended up putting the entire bowl in the freezer and left it there. It took almost 2 hours in the freezer to firm the dough! Not that I want to discourage you from baking these or anything (I am), and I’m sure that Mrs. Weir was an excellent baker who had no trouble with these at all, but I’m throwing in the towel.
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup lard (or butter, or a mixture of shortening and butter)
- 1 cup rich buttermilk
- 1 level Tbsp. vinegar in the buttermilk
- 2 c. granulated sugar
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 4 cups flour
- 3 tsp. baking powder
- pinch salt
- sprinkle of nutmeg
- grated rind of one lemon
- Preheat oven to 350*.
- In a medium bowl mix together flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and nutmeg.
- In a large bowl mix together eggs, buttermilk with vinegar, sugar, and lemon rind.
- Combine the flour mixture and the eggs mixture, stir well, and put into refrigerator for at least 1 hour to firm.
- Roll into little balls and put onto cookie sheets evenly spaced (3 rows: 3 on top row, 2-3 on middle row, 3 on bottom row).
- Bake for 12 minutes at 350*
- Cool on wire racks and ice as you see fit once they are mostly cool.
You can also bake these at 375* for roughly 11-12 minutes. At 350* & at 375*, just start watching at around the 10-minute mark. Once they begin to lightly brown around the edges they are done.
I iced mine with lemon glaze: powdered sugar, lemon juice, grated rind of one lemon. Make as thick or as thin as you'd like by adjusting the sugar and juice levels.