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In the southern portion of the United States, like South Carolina, adding a local flavor to any recipe makes it distinctly southern in taste. Southerners that incorporate a few of their own natural grown touches adopt the recipe as their own and no doubt that is precisely what happened here. There is a huge community of Scottish descendants in the south and no doubt they merged together in culinary exploration to come up with this.
1 cup butter softened
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
2 cups flour
2/3 cup powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
Granulated sugar or frosting (see Lemon glaze)
2/3 cup crushed pecans
In a medium bowl with a fork, mix butter and lemon extract until blended.
Add flour, pecans, 2/3 cup powdered sugar and salt; stir until well blended. Divide dough in half. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325°. Place one portion of dough at a time on a surface lightly dusted with powdered sugar. Roll dough to about 1/4 -inch thickness (dough should be the same thickness as the cookie cutters). Dip cutters in powdered sugar and cut cookies. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets. Lightly sprinkle with granulated sugar before baking if not decorating cookies after baking. Prick cookies with tines of a fork.
Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or just until golden. Do not overbake. Cool cookies on wire racks. If desired, pipe frosting over lines in design on cookies. Store loosely covered if decorated; otherwise store in an airtight container.
Lemon Glaze: In a small bowl, combine 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, 2 teaspoons corn syrup and 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind. Stir in 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice until of desired consistency. Tint with 1 to 2 drops yellow food color if desired. Use on Lemon Shortbread (see above) or on cookies of your choice. Makes about 2/3 cup.