These are buttery, sweet, and have a great texture just like sand -- hence the name. They're even better after the lemon flavor has emerged, so try to wait a few days before eating them. And if you have Meyer lemons -- use 'em! They'll be twice as good. —Food52
Test Kitchen Notes
test comment —The Editors
all purpose flour
(2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp.
grated lemon zest (from 2-3 lemons)
coarse sea salt, or kosher salt
In This Recipe
Stir the flour and baking powder together in a small bowl. Scrape the butter into your mixer and beat until creamy (use the paddle attachment, if you have one). Add the confectioner's sugar and beat for a minute. Then add the regular sugar and beat for a minute more. Flick in the lemon zest and salt and mix just briefly. Drop in the egg yolks one at a time, and again, mix for just a few moments to combine. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture, and blend just until the dough is formed. Use a spatula to do any last mixing.
Divide the dough between two 1-foot-long sheets of plastic wrap. The dough will be quite soft. Don't worry. Shape it into a rough log, 1 1/2 inches round. Wrap the plastic around the dough and continue shaping and rolling to form a nice round log. Twist the ends and tuck them under the log. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to a few days.
When you're ready to bake the cookies, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and set a rack in the middle of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Lay a third sheet on the counter and pour out a ridge of sugar, approximately the length of the logs, for dipping them in. Then do just that: lay a log on the ridge of sugar and roll it lightly to press some sugar into its sides. Completely coat the logs with sugar, then slice them into 1/4 inch thick slices. A long thin carving knife works well for this. Lay the slices about 3 inches apart on the baking sheets.
Bake for 12-15 minutes (turning the sheets 180 degrees halfway through) until golden on the edges. Cool on baking racks. Store in cookie tin. It's best if you can hold out a day or two before eating- good luck.