Orange Rosemary Shortbread. Sounds like something that would be served at high tea at a “fancy hat” hotel in London. You would bite into one of these delicate shortbreads as you sipped the most perfect cup of tea that you have ever had in your life, and think “so this is how the other half lives. I could get used to this”. Actually, I think you are more apt to be served little tea sandwiches and scones with clotted cream but I’m thinking these Orange Rosemary Shortbreads would fit in nicely.
This recipe was originally a recipe for Rosemary Shortbread Cookies. I can assure you that they are quite wonderful with just the rosemary but when I decided to add some fresh orange zest to the dough, I struck gold. My thoughts are that the orange flavor comes through a little stronger, with a hint of rosemary scented in the background. The combination is delicious and addictive.
As always, shortbread is super simply to make. You do not need any fancy equipment or special biscuit cutters. Cutting the dough into triangles or whatever strikes your fancy with a sharp knife is perfectly fine; even if you plan on serving them at tea time….in London.
Orange Rosemary ShortbreadPrint Recipe
Orange Rosemary Shortbread
- 1 cup unsalted butter - room temperature 2 sticks
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- orange zest - finely zested from one large navel orange
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon - course kosher salt*
Using the paddle attachment of a stand mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add in the brown sugar and beat for another 2 minutes. Again you are looking for a light and fluffy mixture. Scrape down the sides as needed.
Add in the egg yolk and beat until well incorporated. Add the chopped rosemary and the orange zest and mix until combined.
In another bowl, sift or whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder and the salt. On low-speed add in the dry ingredients into the butter/sugar mixture and mix just until it comes together. You should not see any more flour but try to not over-mix the dough.
Place a piece of plastic wrap on the counter. Dump the dough on to the plastic wrap and shape into a flat disk. Wrap and refrigerate the dough for about a half an hour.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 325° F. and prepare a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper.
When the dough has been chilled long enough to work with, take it out of the refrigerator and sprinkle some flour on your counter top. Roll out the dough with a rolling-pin until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Measure with a ruler. A 1/4" can be thicker than you think.
Using a cookie cutter, biscuit cutter or a sharp knife to cut out desired shapes and place on the prepared baking sheet. Gather the scraps together to make more short bread cookies.
Bake for about 15 minutes and check on them. They should have turned a slight golden brown. If not, add another minute or two. Do not over bake.
Let the shortbread cookies cool for 10 minutes on the sheet pan and them transfer over to a wire rack to finish cooling.
If you substitute table or fine salt for the course kosher salt, you need to use less salt than the recipe calls for. Link to conversion chart.
Adapted from the recipe for Rosemary Shortbread, found in Joanne Chang’s cookbook “Flour”. Highly recommend!