Crispy/Chewy Lemon Cookies

There are 14 days of school until summer break. 3 of those are half days. And although it feels like it was just yesterday I was accepting the offer for this job, these last few weeks are draaaaaaggging.

I have really mixed emotions about summer (which for me is actually about 6 months long because aside from a few days of meeting with my sub and getting my room ready, I’m not working again until December; maternity leave, you are a beautiful thing!). I never realized how much I would come to love these kids, and I can’t believe they are going to HIGH SCHOOL in just a few months! Most of them, I’ll miss like crazy. Some of them… well I wish them the best!

Now that I’m about to wrap up my first year teaching, I’m even more in love with my job than I have been all year. I always felt like I was in the right place and doing the right thing, but seeing how far my students have come and how well I’ve gotten to know them has given me this crazy proud, emotional mix of feelings that I’m sure is affecting me much more because of these stupid pregnancy hormones than it otherwise would be. Still, I can’t say that I’m not pretty excited to have a few months (pre-baby) to sleep a lot, knit a lot, hopefully work out a lot, and enjoy the end of child-free life!

I’ve been trying to bake more for the staff because they’ve made my first year of teaching absolutely incredible, and also because I really feel like baking but definitely do not need to be eating everything I make. For some reason, I’ve been craving lemony things lately, and these cookies jumped out at me from the pages of my Gourmet cookbook. I normally cringe at the idea of shortening, but it does give cookies an amazing chewiness that butter alone simply doesn’t. These are crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside, and have just the right amount of lemon flavor. Like pretty much all cookies, they’re highly addictive!

(Gourmet Cookbook)

Makes about 30 cookies

1/2 cup shortening
2 Tbsp butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon extract
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350.

Cream the butter and shortening until smooth. Beat in the sugar and mix on medium-high until light and fluffy.

Scrape down the bowl and mix in the extracts, lemon juice, and lemon zest and mix until smooth.

Stir the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together, then add to the rest of the dough. Mix on low until combined and all traces of flour disappear.

Roll a scant tablespoon of dough at a time into a ball then flatten slightly and place 2″ apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until edges are golden.

Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool, then sift powdered sugar over the top.

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