Cookies: Because It's the Little Things, People.

June 2, 2010

Friends. I am seriously sleep-deprived. Like deliriously sleep-deprived. Little E cut a tooth, got a cold and now I think she is just in the habit of waking up every two hours, then wanting to stay up from about 4:30 to 5:30 (yes, that would be the a.m.) before going back to sleep for a bit. Oh, and have I mentioned I cannot do the whole cry it out thing? I am weak. Very weak.

My doctor has told me sleep deprivation is not good for one's "mood." My husband can confirm this beyond any doubt. So, I have taken to little things to cheer me up a bit. Like these cookies here.

Said cookies made their debut (to me anyway) about two years ago in the Gourmet issue about Southern Cooking. The recipe then ignited across blogland (perhaps you remember Molly gushing about them?). I made these babies A LOT in 2008, but as is my usual M.O., I burned out on them and then filed them away in some deep dark closet of my brain.

Enter: First Weekend and BBQ of Summer. I wanted to make something a bit summery and simple. Ahhhh, yes. Buttermilk Cookies. I cannot think of another cookie that would go better with a glass of iced tea or lemonade.

Buttermilk Cookies

I finally realized why I like these cookies so much; they remind me of madeleine cookies. I don't have a madeleine pan but have always wanted to try making them. With this recipe, I don't think I ever will!

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest (I always add quite a bit more)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup well-shaken buttermilk
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
3 tablespoons well-shaken buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Butter 2 large baking sheets.

Whisk together flour, zest, baking soda, and salt. Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in vanilla. Mix in flour mixture and buttermilk alternately in batches at low speed, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until smooth.

Drop level tablespoons of dough about 1 1/2 inches apart onto baking sheets. Bake, 1 sheet at a time, until cookies are puffed and edges are golden, 12 to 15 minutes per batch. Cool cookies on sheets 1 minute, then transfer cookies to racks.

Glaze cookies:
Whisk together all glaze ingredients and brush onto tops of warm cookies. Let stand until cookies are completely cooled and glaze is set.

Cooks' note: Cookies are best the day they're made but can be frozen, wrapped well, up to 1 month.

photo by romulo yanes


  1. Ooh... i was in need of a new cookie recipe. Thanks! I feel you on the sleep deprivation and the inability to let your baby cry it out - my six month old still gets up twice during the night (minimum). Luckily, the cry-it-out advocates in my life have learned to leave me alone about it. Hopefully Little E will start sleeping well again soon!

  2. I was just thinking about cookies...and you! My family and I really love those sister~roommate oatmeal~coconut cookies that you posted about a while ago. I'm going to give these a go right now!
    Good luck with the sleeping thing. I have a 22 m.o. who I'm trying to wean~crying, yes. Heartbreak, yes. Sweet dreams for each of us~eventually!

  3. I'm in the same exact state, except my excuse is that we stayed up too late because we HAD to watch the 24 finale...finally! I'm sure paying for it now. In fact, I'm sipping coffee right this moment. So, I'm right their with you. :)

    The cookies look delicious; I will be making these soon.

  4. I, too, am weak. Baby Boy sleeps with us and seems to nurse all night long since I returned to work. I feel like the only mom who does not have a perfect little routine down. Cookies will help. Thanks!

  5. I am so going to make these soon. Thanks for sharing. Zest makes everything better . . .

  6. well, know that there are others of us out there who are also existing in the land of sleep deprivation. And we only cry EVERY ONCE in a while.

    I'm finding that delicious things to eat definitely bring solace in times of despair.

    Which is why I've decided to be FINE with extra pregnancy weight for at least they first 7 years.

  7. a cookie recipe with buttermilk? you can't go wrong. thanks!

  8. Just want to say I made these cookies and my family loved them. I even came home the other day from NYC and our housekeeper was in our kitchen baking another batch for my kids! ( I am making more tonight for friends) Thankfully we have massive stone walls in our farmhouse kitchen and even in 90 degrees its nice and cool for baking.
    Thanks for sharing such a yummy recipe
    ps, I love the pictures on your french farmhouse post, we are putting a sink like that in our stone springhouse, I love rustic modern!!


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