I love chocolate. Love it. But sometimes around the holidays there's a desperate need for a yang to the yin of chocolate, a Ginger Rogers to the cocoa Fred Astaire. That's where these cookies come in. They are the perfect respite from the chocolate overdose that can sometimes come this time of year. Think of these cookies as a pit-stop before you dive back into seventy more laps of chocolate chips.
This is probably a 2-day recipe, as the jam and dough need some time to chill before they're really ready to rumble. I'd recommend at least 4 hours for each in the fridge, so unless you're doing an all-day bake sesh (get a job!) you should plan ahead.
Let's start with the jam.
To make the jam, put the blueberries, butter, and pectin into a non-stick skillet and heat them on high while stirring. I used half fresh blueberries and half frozen, although that was mostly out of poor planning on my part. I think it's a nice combo, because the real blueberries, unless they are wild, sometimes have weird white, pulpy centers that aren't as nice to look at; the purplish hue of the frozen blueberries makes you forget all about that.
Once the berries and butter and pectin are heated up and bubbling, go ahead and add the cup of sugar. Stir and stir and stir, as the mixture bubbles and the sugar dissolves. Let it boil for 5 minutes--you'll see it cooking down, and big viscous bubbles start to form. Once it's cooked down to about a cup and a half, take it off heat, transfer the jam to a bowl, cover it, and let it cool off in the fridge.
1 C butter
1 C sugar
3 Tbsp grated lemon peel
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/4 C flour
Next we'll make the lemon cookies. These cookies could definitely stand on their own, if you're not so hot on the jam aspect. Mix together the butter, sugar, salt, and lemon peel in a standing mixer. Or by hand, if you're fly like that. Then toss in the eggs--some similar recipes call for just the yolks, but I don't have time for frivolous things like separating eggs. And by that I mean the recipe works just fine if you use the whole egg.
Once that's all blended, add the flour in. Add it slowly, because it's better for the dough and also because it will prevent a huge cloud of flour from blowing up in your face from the mixer. CHALLENGE: I'm going to do that thing that recipes do where they say "Add the flour slowly" but also "Don't over-beat the eggs!" I'm not sure what that means. Basically don't walk away from the mixer and forget that it's going, because then your dough will probably end up not as good.
When the dough is mixed, roll it out into two cylindrical logs about the diameter of a fifty cent piece. Or for the younger kids, a Pog. Or for the much younger kids, a cookie-sized circle. Wrap the logs in wax paper or tin foil, and chill them for at least 4-6 hours. Go to sleep.
After everything is chilled, heat your oven to 400. Take the dough logs out and cut them into thin circles, and lay them out on parchment paper. PRO TIP: If you don't have parchment paper, you can just cut a brown paper bag and use it as a more than passable substitute. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, take them out, and let them cool on a rack. When they are cooled, spread jam on one side of a cookie and smoosh it against another cookie. Voila! A delicious sandwich cookie that will make your heart go pitter patter.