Monday, January 14, 2008

Herby cookies

This past Sunday we had a little bake sale to support our church. As usual, the baking took place in the wee hours of the night before. The treat of the day was Rosemary Shortbread. Very simple, very delicious, and very dangerous to bake late at night when you're feeling the munchies. The heavenly scent they give off as they bake will make you swoon. There were some suggestions by readers to incorporate lemon rind into the dough, but since I was stranded in the woods at my brother's place with no lemon in sight, it will have to wail till next time.

Recipe: Rosemary Shortbread
Adapted from
3/4 sticks (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crumbled

Preheat oven to 350°F. and butter generously a 9-inch cake pan or coat lightly 1 9-inch round shortbread mold with vegetable oil spray (I used a cookie sheet for lack of either at the time, and it came out just fine).

In a bowl with an electric mixer beat butter and honey with sugar until light and fluffy. In another bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and chopped or dried rosemary. Beat flour mixture into butter mixture until just combined.

On a lightly floured surface knead dough about 8 times, or until it just comes together. With floured hands press dough evenly into pan or mold. If using cake pan score dough into 8 wedges with floured tines of a fork and with flat sides of tines press edges decoratively (this is totally optional). Press small rosemary sprigs on top (very time-consuming and thus also optional, especially if you happen to have two cute but very demanding children).

Bake shortbread in middle of oven 18 to 30 minutes, or until pale golden, and let stand in pan for 10 minutes (be sure not to over bake). While shortbread is still warm, loosen edges from pan with a small knife and invert onto your hand covered with a kitchen towel. Invert shortbread onto a cutting board and cut halfway through round along score marks. Cool shortbread on a rack.

Enjoy with a cup of Earl Gray tea.


Anonymous said...

your blog is making me wish i were more culinary!
will test out.

Undercover Cook said...

sl - just a warning about these. The scent might make you faint! Please let me know how it goes if you make them.

Anonymous said...

herby cookies are currently underway -- despite being an architect, mine look nothing like your neatly constructed masterpieces!

but i already have my earl grey brewing.