The Poppy Fields of Flanders honor those who served in war. Perfect for Veteran’s Day or Remembrance Day – celebrating the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. The day of Armistice when World War I came to an end. These lemon-poppy seed cookies are superb. Poppies still grow in Flanders Fields, the sun shining bright upon them, the breezes swaying them amid the crosses, row after row, marking the burial places of our fallen. Warrior heroes, one and all, whose loss is felt to this day. The poppy has become an international symbol for our veterans and honored dead.
- 1/2 Cup butter, softened
- 3/4 Cup Confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon poppy seeds
- 2 Cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling the dough
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 large egg whites
- 4 Cups Confectioners' sugar
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- red and black food colouring
- poppy seeds, for sprinkling
- Beat butter, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest and juice until combined. Beat in flour, salt and poppy seeds. Form dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out cookies using 2 or three different size cookie cutters. Transfer to a baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes
- Bake until the edges just start to brown, 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely
- Beat egg whites until firm but not dry. Add Confectioners' sugar and lemon juice and beat to combine. Add more lemon juice if too thick or more sugar if too thin. Tint a large portion red, a small portion black and leave the remaining white
- Trace an outline around the cookie with the red icing, following the poppy shape. Pipe a dot of icing into each of the petals and feather to cover each petal. Immediately make a circle of small dots in the middle with the white icing. Using a toothpick draw the white icing to the edges of the poppy. Once the icing is set, pipe a large white dot in the center of each cookie. Once the dot is set, pipe a black line around the dot and immediately sprinkle with poppy seeds. Allow to set completely before storing.
Time does not include time to decorate these. This will take a while but would be fun if you can get some help from the kids in your life!
Adapted from Martha Stewart.
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