Recipe: matcha green tea shortbread cookies
Someone has been doing their snow dances, because we are finally seeing a little winter love over here. Last week it snowed a nice half-foot at the local hill. I knew it was going to snow. You see, every time Kat comes to visit Boulder from Colorado Springs, it snows!
of course, the winds were not far behind
It mostly cleared up by the time Kat arrived for lunch the next day. We are huge fans of The Pinyon, but when they announced the start of lunch service in the new year we promised one another that this would be our next get together. I mean, a favorite resto that serves my favorite meal of the day? Booyah! We met up with two other fascinating and uniquely wonderful friends: Butter (how can you not love a girl who goes by the name Butter?) and Michael.
we all shared the fried brussels sprouts leaves salad, which was *amazeballs*
my shrimp po’ boy
Jeremy returned from travel and we spent the weekend driving to and from IKEA, disassembling and reassembling the house, working, and waiting for more snow. It was warm, windy, and not snowing.
while we waited: dramatic cloud formations at sunset
a little pink afterglow
But it did start snowing this morning on our backcountry ski and it continued to snow all day, dropping a few inches in the neighborhood and more in the mountains. Our winter weather pattern in the Colorado mountains is mostly like this: if it isn’t snowing, it’s sunny. Sometimes it’s both snowing AND sunny. Usually when it snows, it tends to be overcast and cold. That’s how we like it. Jeremy invariably makes himself a hot cup of coffee or tea when he comes inside from the cold, and if there is a sweet nibble of cookie, cake, or pastry to be had, his day is pretty much golden. I figured, if one likes tea and cookies, surely one would like tea in cookies!
flour, butter, sugar, confectioner’s sugar, egg yolks, matcha green tea powder
mix the matcha and confectioner’s sugar together
I’ve had this recipe on my “to try” list for years. I don’t know why it was buried for so long. I love matcha green tea anything because it’s such an easy and lovely “Asian” ingredient to incorporate into so many western desserts. And because this is a shortbread, I knew it would be reliable to bake at altitude with essentially no need for adjustments. You have no idea how much I love that.
beat the matcha, confectioner’s sugar, and butter until smooth
mix in the flour
add the yolks
The better the quality of your matcha green tea powder, the brighter green it should be. I used to have a heck of a time trying to find it, but these days it seems to be available in town (Boulder) and online. I purchased this batch from Whole Foods’ old coffee/tea counter in bulk.
gather the dough into a ball
form a flattened disc and refrigerate
You don’t have to use a cookie cutter. You can just as easily roll the dough into a log and slice it, or roll it out flat and cut it into squares or rectangles… but cookie cutter shapes are so fun and cute! I don’t own any 2-inch cookie cutters, so I used a tiny 1-inch cookie cutter (which is probably a fondant cutter or something). Small cookies are great because you make so many of them and they’re totally adorbs.
roll the dough out to 1/2-inch thickness
cut out the shapes
Unlike some cookies that don’t do well with recombined scraps, these were terrific. I’d cut out all of the cookies I could, then gently press the scraps together and refrigerate them, roll them out, and cut more cookies. Just try to avoid manipulating and mooshing the dough too much.
roll the cookie dough in sugar
place on parchment-lined baking sheet to bake
This shortbread has a lovely – almost brittle – crumble as you bite into it. Then it melts on your tongue (probably from all of that butter) and releases a flood of vegetal, green, earthy, bitter, sweet. These little matcha green tea shortbread cookies are ideal for popping into your mouth, chased by a swig (or sip) of hot tea. [Note: I noticed the flavor of my cookies changed after 3 or 4 days – changed to an off-taste. I’m not sure if anyone else has experienced this, but I’d love to know if you have.]
a little tea time
matcha green tea shortbreads
Matcha Green Tea Shortbread Cookies
3/4 (2.25 oz.) cup confectioner’s sugar
1 1/2 tbsps matcha green tea powder
10 tbsps (5 oz.) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 3/4 cup (8.5 oz.) flour
3 large egg yolks
1 cup granulated sugar (to coat the dough)
Whisk the confectioner’s sugar and matcha powder together. Beat the butter and matcha sugar mixture together in a stand mixer (use paddle attachment) until the butter is smooth and light. Add the flour and stir until just combined. Mix in the egg yolks until they are incorporated and the dough comes together. Gather the dough into a ball and flatten it into a thick disc. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or until it is firm. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to about 1/2-inch thickness. Use a small cookie cutter (about 2-inches) to cut shapes from the dough. (*Note: I didn’t have a 2-inch cookie cutter, so I used a 1-inch cookie cutter and it worked quite well.) Roll the cut shapes in granulated sugar and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes (13 minutes for me) or until they begin to turn golden at the edges. Makes about 5 dozen 1-inch cookies (probably 3 dozen 2-inch cookies). Store in airtight container away from sunlight as the color will fade with exposure to sun.