The Ellis County Fair in July is an annual showcase of accomplishments by local youth and adults. One of the largest — and certainly one of the most delicious — categories includes exhibits by members of the 4-H foods project.

The 4-H motto is “To make the best better.” 4-H bakers exhibited their best in the 4-H Foods division at the 2017 Ellis County Fair. The following is one of the award-winning recipes from the fair, a light and luscious lemon cookie which earned the rating of “Best 4-H Cookie.” I hope you enjoy this prize-winning recipe and will join me in congratulating the exhibitor — Colton Metzler of the Ellis Sunflowers 4-H Club.

Lemon crinkle cookies

Makes 2 to 3 dozen


½ cup butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 whole egg

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon baking soda

1½ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease light colored baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest and juice. Scrape sides and mix again. Stir in all dry ingredients slowly until just combined, excluding the powdered sugar. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again briefly. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and cookies look matte (not melty or shiny). Remove from oven and cool cookies approximately 3 minutes before transferring to cooling rack. Note: If using a non-stick darker baking sheet, reduce baking time by approximately 2 minutes.

Linda K. Beech is Cottonwood District Extension agent for family and consumer sciences.