Shortbread Two Ways – Lemon Verbena and Lavender Citrus

ShortbreadShortbread cookies are among my favorite types of cookies.  Sweet but not too sweet, a great base for all kinds of flavor ideas, and rather simple.  This summer I was growing Lemon Verbena in my backyard (until I killed it despite assurances that it is un-killable, but that’s another story), and I also attended a local Lavender festival which offered some inspiration for this post.

If you do not have Lemon Verbena, you may have something else in your garden that is comparable (Lemon Balm, Lemon Basil, etc.)—just smell the leaves and if it smells delicious it will in all likelihood taste delicious.

For the Lavender Citrus cookies, please be aware that not everybody likes the taste of lavender.  It seems to be a love it or hate it type thing (like cilantro?).  Personally, if I were making cookies for a group I would not just make Lavender Citrus because there is bound to be a person or two who would not enjoy them.

Lemon Verbena Shortbread

  • Servings: 30 cookies
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Lemon Verbena Shortbread3
Ingredients

½ c sugar
½ c loosely packed lemon verbena leaves, chopped
½ c + 6 T unsalted butter
2 c all-purpose flour
Pinch salt
1 T lemon zest

Instructions

  • Pulse sugar and lemon verbena leaves in a food processor until well combined and leaves are pulverized.
  • In a mixer, cream verbena/sugar mixture with butter until light and fluffy.
  • Combine flour and salt in a small bowl.  Incorporate into the butter mixture at medium speed to make a soft dough.  Add lemon zest.
  • Remove dough from mixer, roll into a long tube/worm, and wrap in cling wrap.  The diameter of your “worm” will be the size of your cookies.  I like mine about 1.5″. Refrigerate for one hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Remove dough from refrigerator.  When still wrapped in plastic, give it a nice roll on the counter to even out the edges and create a nice, relatively smooth tube.  Unroll and slice into ¼” thick discs.  Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or silpat.  They will barely grow, so you can place them relatively close to one another.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until edges start to golden.  Remove from oven and move to a cooling rack. 

Lavender Citrus Shortbread

  • Servings: 30 cookies
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Lavendar Shortbread2
Ingredients

½ c sugar
½ c + 6 T unsalted butter
2 c all-purpose flour
Pinch salt
1 T lavender buds
1 T orange zest

Instructions

  • In a mixer, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
  • Combine flour and salt in a small bowl.  Incorporate into the butter mixture at medium speed to make a soft dough.  Mix in lavender buds and orange zest.
  • Remove dough from mixer, roll into a long tube/worm, and wrap in cling wrap.  The diameter of your “worm” will be the size of your cookies.  I like mine about 1.5″. Refrigerate for one hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Remove dough from refrigerator.  When still wrapped in plastic, give it a nice roll on the counter to even out the edges and create a nice, relatively smooth tube.  Unroll and slice into ¼” thick discs.  Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or silpat.  They will barely grow, so you can place them relatively close to one another.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until edges start to golden.  Remove from oven and move to a cooling rack.
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