Neighbours! Love them or hate them, they are an integral part of our lives.
Kay and I have lived through a wide variety of them. The Liverpool fan in London, for example. We lived in the apartment above him, and he cheered and banged the ceiling every time his team scored a goal. Unfortunately for him, Arsenal, who I support, were in their 'invincible' phase then, so I out cheered him every time. I am kind of glad I don't live next to Mr Liverpool anymore, especially considering Arsenal's recent performances :-)
The there was the time when we first moved to Liverpool and lived smack bang in the middle of student halls... I don't have to draw you a picture of that, surely. Lets just say that we only stayed there for a month! Then of course, Madam Rubbish, in the apartment next door to us in Liverpool, who thought that the shared apartment hallway was the perfect place to leave garbage bags full of rotting food. Or the creatures in the penthouse above us, whose moving in party lasted three whole days and nights... and ended up with shoes and household items being chucked over balconies.
And then for our piece-de-la-resistance in Hoylake. Mr Frustrated Rock Star Bartender, whose living room adjoined ours (and Aditi's) bedroom, and who thought it was perfectly acceptable to play his electric guitar at 3 AM... every night!!! And of course, --wail-- sing to it too. He wasn't even that good at it! Oh, and then get drunk and decide it would be great fun to wake up the baby next door by banging on the bedroom walls. Suffice it to say, that I was VERY tempted to post a dirty nappy through his postbox... I never did though, more's the pity.
So, when we moved to Edmonton, Kay and I decided that it was about time we had some neighbour luck. And we did. We are incredibly lucky to finally have kind, caring neighbours, who we share garden bounty with, and who keep an eye on our place when we are away, and not to forget the cherries and apples we get from them.
Anyway, there is a point to my rambling :-)
Dom from Belleau Kitchen asked us to sift through our magazine and newspaper cut outs for this month's Random Recipe Challenge. I am an obsessive collector of recipes from all sources, and of course, there is no rhyme or reason to my collection method. I kind of shuffled all my random pieces of paper around, then pulled out one of them. It turned out to be a recipe for lemon zucchini cookies, that had been given to me earlier this summer by my neighbour Vee. I figure I can use it, because she had copied it from the Edmonton Journal.
Hey, guess what? Oh yes, I have tons of courgettes or zucchini as they are called here, as you have no doubt been noticing by the amount of recipes to use them up on the blog. I happened to have a fresh one just ready to be picked, and so off I went to the backyard and grabbed it. The rest of the ingredients were pretty much store cupboard ones, and I whipped this recipe up in no time.
I was pretty apprehensive about how it would turn out, not having actually used zucchini in a sweet recipe before this. I needn't have worried. Vee has never steered me wrong before this, and these cookies were really really great. The addition of the grated zucchini made them lovely and moist, and they were gorgeously chewy, with a delicate tang from the lemon frost. And the colour was so pretty, creamy with those darker green flecks throughout. This is definitely a recipe I will be making on several more occasions, and very much a fantastic use for all those courgettes coming up. And I thanked my lucky stars for the lovely neighbours we now have, and long may we live next to each other.
I tinkered a little bit with the recipe, so I am posting it up here. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Adapted from the Edmonton Journal
For the cookies:
2 cups flour (500 ml, measured)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp lemon zest
1 cup unpeeled grated zucchini (courgettes)
1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
About 3 tbsp milk, only if required
1 cup icing sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice (or more to taste)
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Beat in the egg and lemon rind until light and fluffy.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, ground ginger and salt.
Add the flour mixture to the creamed butter-sugar-egg mixture gradually. Using a wooden spoon, beat until well combined.
Stir in the grated zucchini and nuts. If the mixture is too thick and stiff, add the milk one tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is a little looser. Don't make the mixture too runny.
Drop by rounded teaspoon heaps on a greased baking sheet and bake for 17 - 20 minutes, until light brown round the edges.
Brush with the lemon frost when you take the cookies out of the oven and they are still hot. This will give them a beautiful glaze.
To make the lemon frost, whisk together the lemon juice and icing sugar, and keep aside until required.