Monday, June 1, 2009

Basil Lime Shortbread Cookies

Lately I've been kicking around some interesting flavors for my shortbread cookies. Last month as I was sitting in my friend Janet's car at the antique show in Brimfield,( taking a break from walking the fields...whew!!...I'm still tired from all that walking!!) I noticed she had a stack of magazines, so I looked through some of them and came upon this recipe. I guess, as the summer is almost officially here, I'm inspired to use some fresh herbs in my baking and this recipe sounded so great! How could you miss with basil and lime?!

I love making shortbread cookies for several reasons. First, they are so buttery and just so very yummy!! And second, they are great, in my humble opinion, to bake because you can make the dough ahead and refridgerate and use when you'd like. And lastly, once baked, shortbread has a longer shelf life than most other cookies because they just improve in flavor with time ( just be sure to keep in an air tight container ) what's not to like!??'s the recipe.

Basil Lime Shortbread Cookies

3/4 cup unsalted butter ( room temperature )
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup finely chopped basil
2 tbsp. lime zest ( finely grated )
Lime sugar for sprinkling on top of cookies before baking.( Lime zest mixed with sugar).

Cream the butter and sugar til light and fluffy.
Beat in the vanilla and salt.
In a small bowl, toss flour, basil and lime zest.
With mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the butter mixture til it forms a ball.
Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refridgerate at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Once dough is out of fridge for a little while and has softened a bit, roll on lightly floured surface ( I roll out between 2 pieces of plastic wrap ). Roll out to about 1/4" thickness. (If dough is too sticky, you can always put it back in the fridge to chill a bit.) Cut out desired shapes and place on parchment lined sheet. Sprinkle with lime zest sugar. Bake approx. 10 minutes ( mine took a bit longer so watch for edges to be slightly browned).

They do get better flavor the next day. Perfect with some refreshing lime sorbet!! Yum!!

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