Lavender-lemon cookies, revisited
Shortbread was the answer. I'm sure there are other good alternatives to the not-so-great-lavender cookies I made on my not-so-good day, but Sunday's shortbread experiment didn't disappoint.
In fact, Sunday was a nice day overall. I worked out, wished a good friend happy birthday, and dropped AT&T as my wireless carrier. I can talk on the phone! In my house. Walking the dog down the street. Anywhere in my neighborhood. The calls never drop, the connection isn't fuzzy, and I'm able to listen to voicemail messages in their entirety. I miss the iPhone's fun applications and colorful screen, but they're no substitute for a working phone line.
Back to the cookies: shortbread's tender crumb and buttery flavor provide the perfect backdrop for the lavender-lemon combo I was so eager to try. These cookies would be great with a cup of hot tea, and though I don't plan to consume hot beverages in this weather, I know this batch of cookies won't be thrown out.
They're so good I should call and tell someone about them.
Lavender and Lemon Shortbread
Adapted from The Joy of Cooking
Makes 24 bars
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons dried lavender, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest, finely grated
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-2 teaspoons sugar to sprinkle on top (optional)
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cream the butter and both sugars together with the paddle attachment of a heavy-duty mixer. Add the salt, lavender, and lemon zest, and continue to beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.
Add the flour and mix to combine. The dough should come together — it may look a bit crumbly. If necessary, add a teaspoon or two of water until it holds together. Lightly knead, then press into an 8 x 8-inch square, ungreased baking dish.
Pierce the dough deeply with a fork, sprinkle with 1-2 teaspoons of sugar (if using), and place the pan in the center of the oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the edges are a light brown. Remove the pan to a cooling rack and cut into squares while still warm.