Shortbread is a crisp, light golden treat that is as versatile as it is delicious. There is something perfect about how simple it is yet it can seem so high end at the same time. I love the way a good shortbread has a slightly crumbly texture and will melt in your mouth.
Lemons are in season right now and I love using citrus in baking. It brings out all the flavors of the baked good and provides a light freshness to everything I add it to. In addition, I have huge amounts of rosemary in my garden and I try to incorporate it into my cooking whenever possible. These two flavor combinations are a magnificent classic so I decided to combine them with a classic shortbread cookie.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) salted butter*
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Garnish: fresh rosemary
- Preheat oven to 300℉
- Whisk flour, salt, baking powder and rosemary in a bowl. Set aside.
- Mix butter, honey, confectioners sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice with a stand mixer at low speed. Add flour mixture until dough resembles a coarse meal with some small, pea sized butter lumps. Gather dough into a ball and transfer to a lightly floured surface. Knead dough until it just comes together.
- Roll out dough to 1/4" thick. Using a 3" cookie cutter, cut dough into cookies. Place cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Press small sprig of fresh rosemary in the center of the cookie and sprinkle with granulated sugar.
- Bake in the middle of the oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove cookies from oven, let cool slightly and transfer to rack to cool completely.
- *I always use salted butter in my baking. If you prefer, you may substitute unsalted butter.
This little experiment created an amazing cookie. The rich buttery taste you are accustomed to with a shortbread is balanced ever so wonderfully with the rosemary and lemon. This cookie would be wonderful with tea or coffee in the morning or as a dessert or snack any time of day.