Valentine’s means a lot of different things to different people. Apart from anniversaries, this is probably the only other day where couples go all out in surprising each other. My single friends joke about this being “Singles Awareness Day”, declaring that Valentine’s is just another commercial opportunity for companies to sell something. (Well ain’t that the truth!) Regardless of how you’re spending Valentine’s this year, I think we can all agree that it is a day that celebrates that little thing called love.
Love, which some may call the single sweetest feeling in the world; or the worst heartbreak that forever sours affections for another. But mostly I think love is the balance of the best and worst of human experiences. It’s an up and down jumble of emotions and memories that is neither always good or always bad. In certain moments it can send you to Cloud 9; at the same time it may drop you to any one of Dante’s layers of hell. One word, four letters, but quite possibly the most profound of all concepts to explain.
I’m not trying to partake in the impossible task of creating an explanation as to what or why love is. The fact that it exists is enough. And all I can say is, I’d like to believe we all have a love out there that we deserve. The one that we should work hard to own and keep. The one we accept with all our heart through the good times and the bad. Some of us might have already found it, but for the others who are still waiting: that’s okay! Love will come at its own time. 🙂
That said, I’m fervently wishing that no one is playing Leona Lewis at top volume because they’re suffering from Bleeding Heart Syndrome.
Ya see what I just did there? 😛
So I technically don’t believe in “celebrating” Valentine’s. (Loving is an everyday thing!) But since I like what it stands for anyway, I always make it a point to bake a little something to send out a little love to my readers. This year I went on the more literal route by making heart-shaped cookie sandwiches. These are super easy lemon cookies of the flaky nature. I find that cookies with sour cream (or cottage cheese for that matter) in them often are. They’re not exactly firm-flaky like pie crusts, but they are softer to the bite and have this light colouring that allows you to see ripples of gorgeous flaky layers. They also have that nice slight tang in them that seems to be unique only in sour cream cookies.
What made me love these more was the delicious scent that the lemon zest brought to the table. While the lemon taste isn’t as predominant as the jam, just one whiff and you would know there is lemon in these cookies.
Shaping these into small hearts makes it so easy to pop into the mouth, and even that I can imagine people doing in two ways: Chomping up the hearts in annoyance at this only-for-couples day; OR lovingly biting into the hearts while thinking about the way the significant other smiles. Haha! This cheesiness is so unlike me, but it sure is flowing out quite a bit today! 😀
Makes about 25 cookie sandwiches, depending on size of cut-outs
- 250 grams all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 100 grams caster sugar
- 80 grams unsalted butter, softened
- 250 mL sour cream
- ½ teaspon vanilla extract
- 1 medium egg
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Jam of choice (I recommend strawberry or raspberry)
- Icing sugar, for dusting if desired
- 1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and baking powder. Add the butter, sour cream, egg, vanilla, and lemon zest.
- 2. Bring all the ingredients together with hands to form a very sticky dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and leave in the fridge overnight to harden and make it easier to handle.
- 3. Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C) and line a baking tray with baking paper.
- 4. Roll out the dough to a thinness of 2 to 3 mm, the cut out into desired shapes. The cookies will rise slightly in the oven. Press the scraps back to form a whole piece of dough, then re-roll and re-cut until all the dough has been used up.
- 5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes until a pale golden brown. The cookies will be soft so let them cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
- 6. Once cooled, pair up the cookies. Place a teaspoon of jam on one cookie then gently press together with the other. Dust with icing sugar to serve, if desired.