Sunday, February 7, 2010

Pucker Up Keylime

About two years ago, I began working on a keylime cookie at my father's request. I spent several months baking and adjusting and taste testing several cookies. Finally, after about 5 months, I found the perfect flavor combination. Believe me, creating a keylime recipe is no easy task. There is a lot of time involved in zesting and squeezing tiny limes - in general, I try to do a couple of pounds at a time and freeze the leftovers. Lime juice and zest will both last for a while in the freezer in an airtight container (although sometimes the zest can get a little discolored).

Anyways, despite having created a delicious cookie, my recipe produced a cookie that was just a little too delicate. In fact, I sell this cookie on my website, but find that some of the cookies usually end up broken with each shipment, which is not good service. So this week I set to work trying to create a better constructed keylime cookie with the same great flavor.

There are three books I have been reading and absorbing over the past couple of months - Ratios, Bakewise, and How Baking Works. All three books address the chemistry of baking and teach how ingredients work. The book, Ratios, was quite interesting in that the author proposes any recipe can be changed from crepe to pancake to biscuit to cookie to cake with just an adjustment of the ratio of ingredients. He proposes a couple of basic cookie ratios in his book - while I didn't find his ratios to be perfect for my purpose, I was able to use the information to find a common ratio among my favorite recipes, which has helped me to find my own perfect ratio for the chewy cookies I love to eat! -- I mean bake. :)

So, after working on juicing the tiny limes, I set to work on my new recipe. I adjusted the butter, flour, sugar and amount of lime juice. I was worried about adjusting the amount of juice, because I didn't want less lime flavor, so I added a little extra zest. As it turns out the new recipe was fantastic. The cookies are stronger - so far only one has broken in my cookie jar - and they still taste delicious. My keylime recipe also incorporates white chips for a little bit of sweet taste to offset the tanginess of the lime. I did find that with less lime juice, I may need to cut back a little on the chips, because these were a little too sweet.

Despite too many white chips - the cookies were wonderful. This is one of my most favorite recipes! I find that ironic, because I am not really a fan of lime flavor. In fact, I have never eaten keylime pie - but I am told the cookies taste just like it. There were only enough cookies to give to one taste tester - because my boyfriend's favorite dessert is keylime. So these are going fast!

If you want to try some, visit my website

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