by Lori Feldmann
I love to bake. And when I say that, I mean I am absolutely in love with every part of it. The preparation (deciding what to make, pulling down ingredients, and then busting out my nice shiny baking pans), throwing everything into my mixer and hearing it hum along, making little scoops of cookie dough on sheets (I ration out one scoop for myself for every sheet…I think that’s fair) or pouring batter into perfectly greased and parchment-lined pans. The smell of the house as the delightful dessert is baking and eating warm ooey-gooey chocolate bliss while it’s almost still too hot to eat. I feel in a way baking honors the memory of my mother, who was always baking something or another. Every time I pull something warm and decadent out of the oven I think of her, and how she showed her family love by what she made, and I feel as if I am doing the same, and loving her back across the great divide.
But as an addendum to this, I am a winter baker. (Now that I think about it a lot of things I create are winter activities. I think somehow I feel summer is for relaxing and drinking iced coffee and eating sushi. I don’t try and rationalize these things. Just go with it). So while I bake a couple times a week the minute cool autumn weather hits, when it is still hot out, not so much.
Except for these. These are my it’s-still-too-hot-out-to-bake-but-I-will-bake-these-anyway Goddess treats. I first had these little glorious cookies (with a tall glass of lavender lemonade) served to me by a sister many, many moons ago when I stayed with her for the first time, and they are to die for! I, of course, immediately wrangled the recipes out of her and made them both again the minute I got home, and ever since then making them has reminded me of the sisterhood, so that is who I tend to make them for (or ya know, a whole batch for myself over a weekend where I have an obscene sweets craving). Anyway, I know you will love them just as much as I do! They are light and the perfect treat for summertime and I highly recommend them for Gwyl Awst celebrations (or any time you are gathering with sisters!) Enjoy!
Goddess Cakes with Rose Frosting
1 Cup butter, softened
1 1/2 Cups Powdered sugar
1 Egg, large
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 Cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 tsp Baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
– Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
– Cream together butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla and beat well.
– Sift together flour and remaining ingredients and gradually add to sugar mixture, beating until well combined.
– Roll into 1″ balls and flatten slightly onto ungreased or parchment-lined cookie sheet.
– Bake 10 minutes, do not allow to brown.
– Allow to cool one minute on the baking sheet, then carefully transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
– Pipe rosettes of Rose Frosting (see below) onto the cooled cookies.
For the frosting:
1/2 Stick butter, softened
4 oz Light cream cheese
1 lb powdered sugar
3 Tbsp Heavy cream
2 tsp food grade Rosewater (or to taste)
Food coloring, as needed, to tint icing pink
– Blend together butter and cream cheese, then blend in the powdered sugar.
– Add rose water and enough cream to bring it to a spreadable consistency.
– Add food coloring to tint icing pale pink.
1 Cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Dried lavender blooms (or 1/4 cup fresh)
1 Cup Lemon juice, fresh squeezed
– Combine sugar with 2 1/2 cups water, bringing to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar.
– Add lavender, cover and remove from heat. Let stand minimum 20 minutes, up to 2-3 hours (the longer the more potent the lavender flavor).
– Strain mixture and discard lavender.
– Pour into glass pitcher. Add lemon juice and another 2 1/2 cups water. Stir well.
– Pour into tall glasses half-filled with ice or refrigerate until ready to use.