Baking can be a challenge in the summer. Hot ovens and stovetops aren’t things you want in your life when it’s 75 degrees outside. That’s when you need to pull out the stranger stops–like trying a recipe where all your favorite summer flavors, like lemon and basil, are stuffed into… a cookie.
Now you’re probably thinking, this sounds weird. Basil? Lemons? Cookie? I’m not going to lie to you. You are right. These cookies are pretty weird.
And yet as weird as they are they are also very confident and totally amazing. Kind of like that kid in high school who had neon hair or wore crazy shoes or read in the library all day or didn’t ever do their homework, but instead of being ostracized, everyone loved them anyway, because that kid didn’t care what everyone else thought of them.
That’s pretty much these cookies. No identity crisis here, just a lot of beautiful contradictions. They are lemon-y. They are a bit sweet. They are a little tangy and a little zesty. They are definitely basil-y–herby and earthy. They have a kick and they keep you thinking.
They also keep you eating. I would double the batch if I were you.
Lemon Basil Shortbread Cookies
Makes about 14 cookies
Adapted from Bon Appetit, July 2011
1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted; plus extra
About 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1 stick chilled unsalted butter, diced
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Sift 1/2 cup powdered sugar into a bowl. Add minced basil, lemon zest, and salt to powdered sugar and whisk together, or rub with your fingers, until fragrant. Put butter into the bowl of a stand mixer and add powdered sugar mixture. Beat until just combined. Add flour and lemon juice to powdered sugar mixture and beat until just combined. (Note: If you have a food processor, follow Bon Appetit’s instructions instead of the above.)
Using a tablespoon-sized cookie scoop, scoop leveled balls of dough onto cookie sheet, placing about 2 inches apart. Butter the bottom of a glass and cover with powdered sugar, then press over cookies to flatten slightly.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until edges are just golden brown.
Slowing down…Hello there! A quick note: The blog has slowed down while the author is in grad school--but it hasn't been forgotten, fear not! Posts just won't be every single week anymore. Thanks for stopping by!
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