Shortbread cookies have unique texture, and are surprisingly addictive. This version, flavored with tea and a touch of orange extract, followed the basic method from Helen Fletcher, described in her cookbook: Craving Cookies, The Quintessential American Cookie Book. The food processor makes perfect shortbread dough every single time.
EARL GREY SHORTBREAD COOKIES
(inspired by several sources)
4 bags of Earl Grey tea (about 8g tea, I used decaf)
310 g all purpose flour
48 g cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
227 g butter, very cold, cut into pieces
115 g powdered sugar
1/2 tsp orange extract
Heat the oven to 275 F.
Add tea, flour, cornstarch and salt to the food processor and process a few seconds to mix. Add the butter, process until it is dispersed in small pieces, stop the processor, add the powdered sugar and orange extract, and process it again until a dough forms. You can turn the processor on and off a few times for more efficient mixing. Once the dough starts to form and dance around the bowl, stop and gather it gently with your hands, forming a disc over parchment paper.
If you worked fast, you can proceed right away forming balls, each with 33g of dough. If the dough it too soft or feels at all warm, place it in the fridge for 30 minutes or so.
Working with one little ball at a time, press a design using your favorite cookie press coated with flour so it won’t stick. Freeze the cookies for 10 minutes, then bake at 275F for about 50 minutes over parchment paper. Let the cookies cool for a few minutes then transfer to a cooling rack.
to print the recipe, click here
Comments: Shortbread is perfect for pressing a pattern or using decorative molds, as there is no leavening agent in the dough. Freezing is an additional step that helps the pattern stay even better during baking. As to the low temperature, 275 F gives shortbread a wonderful texture. I saw that recommended in a couple of websites and cookbooks and gave it a try in this bake. Loved it. If you are not pressed for time, consider this little twist. I baked them for 55 minutes exactly, the edges were starting to get golden.
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