Food & Culture

Cooking in Quarantine: Treat Yourself to Some Boozy Baked Goods

Kym Joles of The Fox and Pantry shares a simple spring cookie recipe

By Ariel Shearer April 13, 2020


It’s going on who-knows-how-many-days of quarantine and we figure that, like us, you are tired of your own cooking. We asked local chefs to share some of their favorite safe-at-home foods to cook during the isolation period. Interested in submitting a recipe? Email [email protected].

“I love seeing is how creative businesses have become during this challenging time. When we are out of our comfort zones, that’s where lots of magic can happen. The Fox and Pantry is closed for in-person business, so I’ve started putting together baking kits that I deliver locally. I’m trying to give moms a break or help cultivate a creative space for adults to lose themselves in the moment. I’m also diving deep into my own creative process, so when we come out on the other side I’ll have a set of new and exciting classes. 

Baking has become so popular (no flour or yeast in the shops!) and it warms my soul to see passion for this wonderful art blooming in time with spring. There are days when I just need to indulge a little in the kitchen to feed my own soul—with noise-cancelling headphones, because if I hear ‘Mom, can you…’ on more time, I am going to run Forrest Gump-style, screaming profanities.

We have all stocked up on our favorite beverages, and yes, we have all been trying to hide that in our grocery carts under the toilet paper. (Mystery solved, the more toilet paper the more alcohol you can hide!) Happy hour around the country seems to commence regularly over video calls with friends or just because, let’s face it, we are all going stir crazy by early evening. So let’s make gin and lime cookies (measure one shot in the frosting, one for me, one for the frosting, one for me, and so on). I was so excited with these little sinful baking delights—they honestly melt in your mouth and give you the same citrus kick as a gin and tonic. Now, when at checkout at the grocery store with the large gin bottle, I can genuinely say ‘I am using this for work’ as opposed to ‘yes, we are having a dinner party’—because no one would believe that!”

Kym Joles is a Sammamish-based baker and former Food Network contestant who launched her cookie decorating business, The Fox and Pantry, to help others de-stress and flex their creative muscles. We wrote about Joles’ edible artistry in our April issue, and while her home studio is temporarily closed for lessons, Joles is offering take-home cookie and cake decorating kits. For updates, contact Kym through The Fox and Pantry website or follow her on Instagram at @thefoxandpantry_cookies.

(Soft key lime sugar cookies, if you omit the gin)

Makes 32 cookies

Lime Sugar Cookies:

  • 1 cup of salted butter at room temperature (if using unsalted add 1 tsp salt)
  • 1 1/4 cups of white sugar
  • 1 scant cup of confectioner’s sugar
  • ¾ cup of vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp of grated lime zest
  • 5 1/2 scant cups of flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 3 Tbl. water

Lime Frosting:

  • 5 cups of confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 Tbl. Gin (optional)
  • ¼ cup of lime juice
  • 1 cup of butter at room temperature
  • Candied limes for decoration (slice limes into thin slices and boil in sugar and water 1:1 ratio for 15 minutes, leave to cool)

Lime Sugar Cookies:

Heat your oven to 360 degrees. Cream butter, oil, water, sugar and eggs together until light and fluffy (4 minutes).  Add zest and mix until combined. In a separate bowl mix together dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt if added. Slowly add the mixed dry ingredients to the wet mixture until just combined, mixing after each addition. The dough should not be sticky, so when rolling it should not adhere to your hands.

Roll into balls of the desired size (I use a heaped tablespoon amount of dough) and flatten with your hand so the balls resemble flying saucers at about ½ inch thick. (You can also flatten with a fork.) Bake for 7-8 minutes until the top of the cookies have lost their shine—this will keep them soft. Don’t wait for the cookies to start to brown as they will harden when cooled. Cool on a rack and frost with lime frosting.

Lime Frosting:

Beat butter and lime juice together until creamy. Slowly add confectioners’ sugar and gin (optional). Keep adding confectioners’ sugar until a thick consistency with peaks has formed. If you need to add more moisture, add a few teaspoons of milk until the desired consistency is apparent. Pipe swirls of buttercream on the cooled cookies and top with candied lime slices and grated lime zest.


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