I have been really excited for the SUMO Mandarin season to arrive. I had this mandarin for the first time last year and was really impressed with it’s flavor and juiciness. The SUMO was developed over a 30 year period in Japan, by a man who wanted the ease of peeling of a Satsuma mandarin and the size and juiciness of a California Navel orange. That is exactly what we have now. This season I wanted to try and do something with one of them, even thought it’s hard not to just want to gobble them all up as is. I love citrus flavors in cookies. Why not make a sugar cookie with the flavors of this awesome mandarin?
Some people might think sugar cookies are only for Christmas. We need not refrain from them the rest of the year, especially when you have some flavors out there that would work perfectly in one. These cookies use the SUMO in two ways. The zest goes into the cookie batter to provide a nice essence of orange flavor. The juice is mixed with powdered sugar to make a simple, yet bold tasting icing.
The recipe below uses just 1 SUMO. The recipe I use is inspired by a sugar cookie recipe from Paula Dean. I have made several changes.
- 1½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter (slightly softened)
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- zest of 1 SUMO Mandarin
- Juice of 1 SUMO Mandarin
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- Additional zest for garnish (optional)
- In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and powdered sugar.
- Mix in the egg, vanilla, and zest. Thoroughly combine.
- In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cream of tartar.
- Add the dry ingredients in batches to the creamed mixture until you have combined everything well.
- Cover and refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes. This is to harden up the fat so the cookies don't spread too much.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
- Cut the dough in half.
- Roll one half out onto a floured surface to around a quarter-inch thickness. Cut the cookies out with a round cookie cutter or what cookie cutter you like.
- Transfer cookies to a parchment or silicone lined half sheet pan. Do no more than 8 cookies on a pan.
- Bake for 10-14 minutes (depends on size of your cookie cutter) or until slightly browned.
- Allow to cool on a wire rack before glazing.
- Mix together the juice of 1 SUMO Mandarin with powdered sugar. Mix until you form a glaze that is spreadable without being too thick or too runny.
- Spread onto cookies as soon as they are cool enough to handle.
- Garnish with more zest if you like (like I did in my picture)