Irish lace cookies are festive


THESE PRETTY COOKIES have a delicate design and a sweet, crunchy taste. The cookies can be a bit tricky to make so be sure to follow directions exactly. Orange flower water, an optional ingredient, can be found in specialty food stores.

Irish Lace Cookies

2 1/2 teaspoons unsalted butter, softened

1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon orange flower water, optional

1 1/4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder

1/4 teaspoons salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease two large baking sheets with one-quarter teaspoon each of the butter and set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat the remaining butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy, about five minutes. Add the egg, vanilla and orange flower water and beat until light and fluffy, about six minutes.

In a separate bowl, combine the oats, baking powder and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until blended.

Drop 12 mounded teaspoonfuls of the batter about two-inches apart onto each cookie sheet. Bake in the lower third of the oven for ten minutes or until the edges are browned and the centers are golden. Using a thin metal spatula, quickly transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 24 cookies. Each cookie has 37 calories, less than one gram each protein and fat, and 6.5 grams carbohydrates.

-- "The Art of Low-Calorie

Cooking" by Sally Schneider;

Stewart, Tabori and Chang, 1990.

This tasty potato candy is a traditional St. Patrick's treat in areas such as Philadelphia.

( Irish Potato Candies

1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter or margarine, softened

4 ounces cream cheese (half an 8-ounce package), softened

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1-pound box confectioners' sugar

1 7-ounce bag flaked coconut

Ground cinnamon

Cream the butter and cream cheese. Beat in the vanilla and confectioners' sugar, then the coconut. Roll into balls, about the size of a walnut. Roll in cinnamon and refrigerate until firm. Makes about three dozen.

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