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Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy Friday! Here we are with day three of Lemon & Mocha’s 12 Days of Cookies! I’m a chocoholic so when I was coming up with the list for the twelve perfect cookies to share this holiday season I consciously tried to incorporate some balance so it wouldn’t simply be a weeks-long chocolate overload.

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Good thing I’m also a cookie-aholic and don’t discriminate with what flavors make a cookie out-of-this-world delicious!

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

These Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies are light, soft, moist and cakey with grapefruit flavor throughout the cookie and the sweet glaze on top. If the fact that they’re called ricotta cookies freaks you out I promise there is no reason to be alarmed. The ricotta doesn’t flavor the cookie, it just provides that cake-like texture.

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

I actually first had ricotta cookies last Christmas. Matt’s mom had made some lemon ricotta cookies and I was instantly hooked on the pillowy texture and citrus flavor. They seemed like the perfect light cookie to cut through all the usual, rich heaviness around the holidays so I knew I wanted to incorporate a version into my holiday cookie schedule.

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

I followed Giada’s updated lemon ricotta cookie recipe and swapped in grapefruit zest and juice. The end result was citrus cookie perfection! Enjoy!

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Grapefruit Ricotta Cookies
 
Yield: about 45 cookies
Ingredients
for the cookies
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 15 ounces whole milk ricotta
  • 3 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • Zest from ½ grapefruit
for the glaze
  • 1½ cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • Zest from ½ grapefruit
Directions
for the cookies
  1. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating on medium speed until combined after each addition. Add the ricotta, grapefruit juice and grapefruit zest. Beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and stir on low until just combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F making sure oven racks are in the bottom and top third positions. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the cookie dough from the fridge and use a medium cookie scoop or spoon to scoop scant 1½ tablespoons of dough onto the cookie sheets. Bake for 13-15 minutes, switching the cookie sheets from top to bottom halfway through. The cookies should still be pale. Let rest on the baking sheet set on a wire cooling rack for 15 minutes then move to the wire cooling rack to cool completely. Repeat for the remaining cookie dough.
for the glaze
  1. In a small bowl, combine the confectioners’ sugar, grapefruit juice and grapefruit zest. Spoon about ½ teaspoon of glaze onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to spread it around. Let the cookies sit at room temperature to harden for 2 hours.

Recipe slightly adapted from Giadzy.

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Welcome to day two of Lemon & Mocha’s 12 Days of Cookies! I’m sharing these Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies well in advance of the holiday cookie swap season because they freeze beautifully. However, if you are like me and have trouble “forgetting” that delicious cookies are sitting in your freezer then making them ahead won’t really help you out at all since they’ll all most definitely be gone by the time December is here.

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

The best way to describe these cookies is that they taste like fudgey chocolate walnut brownies in cookie form. Chewy and with a crackly top, these Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies are the brownie lover’s dream cookie. Also, the chocoholic’s dream cookie. Also, they’re just damn delicious cookies!

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Making these cookies is very simple and only requires six ingredients. Woo hoo! Since they are flourless, they are quite different from your typical cookie batter. The base batter involves confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, salt, egg whites and vanilla extract. That’s it! No flour, butter or egg yolks.

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

To make sure you have a rich, chocolatey taste you’re going to want to use Dutch-processed cocoa powder. I typically use the Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa Powder, which is a blend of regular and Dutch-processed cocoa powder, with excellent results.

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

I highly recommend these easy and fudgey cookies for your cookie platter this year or for anytime you’re feeling like you want a brownie-cookie treat. The only thing I’m going to try differently next time I make this, which I’m sure will be very soon, is to put in some chocolate chips because I’m a chocolate chips instead of walnuts kind of gal when it comes to brownies, not that you would know it from how many of these cookies I ate… oops! Enjoy!

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies  |  Lemon & Mocha

Flourless Chocolate Walnut Cookies
 
Yield: 12 cookies
Ingredients
  • 2¾ cups walnut halves, roughly chopped
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, making sure oven racks are in the upper and lower thirds positions. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Toast the walnuts. Spread the chopped walnuts onto a large baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes, or until golden and toasted, being sure not to let burn.
  3. In the large bowl of a stand mixer, combine the confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, salt and toasted walnuts on low speed with the paddle attachment. Add the egg whites and then vanilla then beat on medium speed for 3 minutes, or until mixture thickens slightly.
  4. Use a large cookie scoop to scoop the batter into 12 mounds, 6 on each baking sheet, about 3-inches apart. Put the cookies in the oven and immediately lower the temperature to 325 degrees F. Bake for 14-16 minutes, switching the baking sheets halfway through baking. They are done with the tops are glossy and lightly cracked. Carefully slide the parchment paper with the cookies onto wire cooling racks to let the cookies cool completely on the parchment on the wire racks. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Recipe from Food52 Genius Desserts: 100 Recipes That Will Change the Way You Bake.
Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Orange Pistachio Macaroons

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

I’ve been sharing cookie recipes all year long, thanks to Food Network Magazine’s Calendar of Cookies. While those have been great, most of them were very seasonal specific so they aren’t exactly cookies you would bake up in November or December. With Thanksgiving less than two weeks away I’m going full holiday on you all from now until the rest of the year.

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

I love cookies around the holidays. That goes for both baking them and eating them. I (usually) find cookie baking to be relaxing and it’s hard to beat a few hours of baking in the kitchen with Christmas music playing while surrounded by Christmas decorations. Our kitchen is completely open into our living room so I get a great view during the holidays! I also love eating cookies, which I don’t need to explain; you all know about the deliciousness of cookies.

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

Last year I realized that I don’t have that many holiday cookie recipes on Lemon & Mocha so I decided to change that by planning 12 Days of Cookies during 2019! For my next twelve posts, I’ll be sharing exclusively cookie recipes worthy to be at your holiday celebrations. From chocolatey to citrusy, soft to crunchy, simple to more complex, there’s literally a cookie recipe for everyone on your list and I can’t wait to share them with you all!

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

We’re kicking it off with something in that citrusy, chewy and simple category: Orange Pistachio Macaroons. These are your classic coconut macaroons infused with fresh orange zest and crunchy pistachio nuts. As with most cookies, it’s hard to eat just one.

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

I didn’t chocolate-dip these since I have plenty of other chocolate-packed cookies I’ll be sharing, but if you were to dip the bottoms of these in dark chocolate it would probably be incredible since dark chocolate and orange pair really well together.

Orange Pistachio Macaroons  |  Lemon & Mocha

While you’re waiting for the rest of my holiday cookie posts to slowly go up one by one, below are a few recipes that I already have on my blog to get you started. Happy baking!

 

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Soft Gingersnap Cookies

Soft Gingersnap Cookies

Chocolate Cherry Crinkle Cookies

Chocolate Cherry Crinkle Cookies

Game Day Cookies

Game Day Cookies

Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Orange Pistachio Macaroons
 
Yield: about 30 cookies
Ingredients
  • ⅓ cup shelled unsalted pistachios
  • 3 large egg whites
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 14-ounce package sweetened shredded coconut (about 3 cups)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F, making sure oven racks are in the upper and lower thirds positions. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Using a knife or food processor, finely chop the pistachios. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites, sugar, orange zest, vanilla and salt until the mixture is frothy. Stir in the pistachios. Stir in the shredded coconut until combined. Spoon heaping tablespoons of the coconut mixture onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake the macaroons for 25-30 minutes, or until golden, switching the pans halfway through cooking. Let the macaroons cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheets set on wire cooling racks, then move the macaroons to the wire cooling racks to cool completely.

 Recipe adapted from April 2017 issue of Food Network Magazine.

Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission for my referral. This does not affect the retail cost of the item. Thank you for supporting Lemon & Mocha!

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

Sometimes the tastiest recipes are born out of a classic fridge and freezer clean-out. Last month I was trying to clear out our freezer to have space for all the freezer meals I prepped in anticipation of our little guy’s arrival. Side note: I plan to do a detailed freezer meal prep post when I’m back from my maternity leave so stay tuned!

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

Anyways, the freezer was stuffed with all sorts of odds and ends, one of which was a package of these frozen mini fillo shells. I can’t for the life of me remember why I bought them, but it was clearly for some recipe that never came to be. While I was brainstorming what to stuff the flaky tartlet shells with I thought about how much I love baked brie, especially in the fall when it starts getting chilly outside.

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

These bites are a take on a baked brie that’s been cooked until gooey and smothered with warm nuts and dried fruit. The first time I made them they were really good, but they needed more of that gooey brie so I adjusted the recipe to ensure you won’t be missing the cheese in your tartlets.

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

For the topping, we’re combining crunchy toasted pecans, tart dried cranberries, dried apricots and some apricot preserves for a little sweetness. This mixture gets dolloped on top of the brie in the fillo shells before being baked for just ten minutes. These is a great mini appetizer for Thanksgiving or a Christmas party, especially because it is so incredibly quick to throw together.

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

Now, I hope you all have enjoyed the last several savory recipes because from this Friday until Christmas Lemon & Mocha is going to be all about the sweets! I’m doing something fun and exciting this holiday season: Lemon & Mocha’s 12 Days of Cookies. I have so many must-make cookie recipes to share and I can’t wait for you to see them all!

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets  |  Lemon & Mocha

Baked Brie Fruit & Nut Tartlets
 
Yield: 15 tartlets
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • 4 dried apricots, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons apricot preserves
  • 6 ounces brie, rind removed
  • 15 frozen mini fillo shells (Athens brand)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Toast the pecans. Place the chopped pecans on a baking sheet then bake for 3-5 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the toasted pecans, dried cranberries, chopped apricots and apricot preserves. Set aside.
  4. Place the tartlet shells on a baking sheet. Cut the brie so you can put a small wedge into the bottom of each tartlet shell. Cover the brie in the tartlet shell with a spoonful of the apricot mixture. Bake for 10 minutes. Serve hot.

 

Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

Happy Friday! Today I’m sharing a recipe that will keep you cozy all weekend long. This is another recipe that I’ve been making for a while, but I’m just getting around to sharing it on Lemon & Mocha.

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

I’m not a big soup person, but when I find one I really love, like the Roast Cauliflower and Garlic Soup or the Healthy Creamy Roasted Carrot Soup, then I just want to eat it all the time. This Italian Wedding Soup is now in my top three along with the two I previously mentioned because it’s packed with hearty flavors.

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

There’s mini beef meatballs, little pasta noodles, spinach and even shredded chicken so a bowl of this soup will not leave you hungry. It tastes like a really awesome chicken noodle soup with added spinach and the cutest little meatballs.

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

One of the reasons this Italian Wedding Soup gets made frequently in our house is because it’s really simple. You could certainly make your own mini meatballs and throw them in to cook in the broth, but I buy frozen mini meatballs from Earth’s Best brand to keep things easy. Plus they taste delicious and are the perfect tiny size for the soup so it’s a no-brainer.

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

Any type of small pasta you prefer can be used; or whatever type you have on hand, which for me on the day I photographed this recipe was alphabet letter pasta. I hope you all try this one soon so you can enjoy it all fall and winter long!

Italian Wedding Soup  |  Lemon & Mocha

Also, an update: My due date is next week so I am currently on a blog break! I have posts that I have been working hard on for the last few months scheduled to post twice a week throughout November and December. I will check in on comments and emails every now and then, but for the most part if you don’t hear from me it’s because I’ll be spending time with my family after the birth of our baby boy. I’ll be sure to check in with you all at some point to give you an update, but in the meantime I hope you all enjoy the posts I have planned and have a wonderful holiday with your family and friends!

Italian Wedding Soup
 
Yield: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, small diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled then thinly sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, trimmed then thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 12 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • ¾ cup small pasta
  • 8 ounces chopped fresh spinach
  • 14-16 ounces frozen mini beef meatballs (I use Earth’s Best)
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
Directions
  1. Place the chicken in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and boil for 15 minutes. Chicken should have an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Remove the chicken from the saucepan and shred once cool enough to handle. No need to save the water it cooked in; it was a boneless skinless breast so the water won’t be flavorful or broth-like.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste then add the pasta and cook for 6 minutes. Add the spinach and cook for 3 more minutes. Add the shredded chicken and the frozen mini meatballs. Cover and simmer on low for 30 minutes.

Recipe slightly adapted from Brown Eyed Baker.