Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Something Good—Shortbread Cookies

The other day, Husband and I were walking to our car parked in a parking lot, and a group of young women passed us on their way into a store. One of them suggested they have dinner while they're in town (it's a place with lots of restaurants), and what should they get, she asked? One of her friends said, "Something good." That's the kind of comment that deserves a smack, as far as I'm concerned. Something good? Something good?! How is the driver or the cook or the person generally in charge of food supposed to work with "something good?"

Well, here's something good—lemon-lime basil shortbread cookies. I found the recipe in the July edition of Bon AppĂ©tit and set it aside to try. I kept forgetting I had dog-eared the page, but this afternoon, I finally got to make the cookies. The thing is, when I was shopping with this recipe in mind, I forgot I would need lemons and only bought limes. No worries. I just doubled up on the lime zest and used lime juice instead of lemon. They're wonderful. Really wonderful. They are something good.

Lemon-Lime Basil Shortbread Cookies

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar plus more for pressing cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2" cubes
2 tablespoons sliced fresh basil leaves
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (or the zest of one lime)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Sanding sugar (optional)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Place flour, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, butter, basil, both zests, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until large, moist clumps form. Measure level tablespoonfuls of dough; roll between your palms to form balls. Place on a large baking sheet, spacing 2" apart. Lightly dust the bottom of a flat measuring cup with powdered sugar and press cookies into 2" rounds, dusting cup bottom with powdered sugar as needed to prevent sticking. Sprinkle tops of cookies with sanding sugar, if using.

Bake until edges are brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool.

NOTE: The cookies I made were a little smaller than suggested and weren't quite 2 inches, so I baked them for 15 minutes, and they were pretty brown around the edges, as you can see in the photo. If you prefer shortbreads to be pale, keep an eye on the oven. 20 minutes is a long time for little cookies.


dive said...

My oh my, Robyn, those look truly scrumptious!

Alifan said...

I second that. yummy...

dive said...

Aha! A comment from someone who bakes so much better than me!
Er … Mum, is there any chance you can knock up a batch of these? Rip the basil rather than slice it but otherwise keep it just as Robyn's yummy recipe.

Scout said...

Beryl, don't listen to him. Cut the basil because it's going to get chopped to bits in the food processor anyway.