Lemon Rosemary Shortbread Cookies
Sweet, tarty, and balanced perfectly with rosemary’s earthiness, these cookies are sweet and savory all in one. They’re perfect for summertime! Draped in a lemon glaze that’s finished off with freshly chopped rosemary, these cookies are sure to satisfy any sweet tooth out there.
This is the year for gardens, isn’t it? Everywhere I look I’m inspired to make my own yard a sanctuary. I love that. I know for me personally, I’ve found some super inspiring gardening accounts on Instagram (follow Golden Barrel here or my own personal account here). I’ve found myself drawn toward mostly European garden accounts. I just love their relaxed, less-than-perfect look. Seeing all this inspiration convinced me to try my hand at my own raised bed gardens. Mitch and I (let’s be honest…mostly Mitch) made a couple raised beds and I planted one full of veggies and the other is designated for cut flowers. I soon ran out of room (man! zucchini is a space hoarder!) and also didn’t want to run out to the side of the house every time I wanted fresh herbs, so I made a small container garden right outside our kitchen for herbs. It’s worked out nicely. Mitch even made me a potting table to place it on–I just love the whole setup.
Anyway, fresh herbs are awesome, are they not? Anyone can grown them–even if you’re pressed for space. All you need is a container (the more rustic, the better in my opinion 😉 ) and some sun and you’re good to go. There’s just nothing like adding fresh herbs to your cooking and baking. And that’s what inspired this recipe. I do love me a savory-sweet treat and that’s just what these cookies are. They’re obviously sweet because they’re a cookie, but the savoriness of the rosemary pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the cookie. And of course there’s the lemon aspect of it all–there’s nothing quite like the fresh summertime taste of lemons. Yum.
The glaze/icing is the proverbial cherry on top. Its sweetness is balanced with fresh-squeezed lemon juice and a bit of zest for the perfect compliment to the buttery cookie.
This is a cut-out cookie recipe but I’m sure you could also just use a scoop and roll out the dough in your hands to make little balls. I would flatten out the dough a bit after you roll them so they aren’t so round. But I wanted to use a little cutter to make same-sized cookies. The uniformity makes me happy. 🙂
I chilled my dough for about 45 minutes before I rolled it out and cut it. This helps to solidify the fat in the dough and prevents the dough from spreading too much while baking. It’s a good idea to do–even if it’s just for 30 minutes.
I did use eggs in my dough. Adding eggs to a shortbread cookie just makes them more tender. Shortbread typically has the tendency of being crisp but by adding eggs to the dough makes them more sturdy (i.e. less crumbly) and chewy.
Finishing with the icing/glaze is the last part. I used both fresh-squeezed lemon juice as well as zest in the icing. Sprinkled with chopped rosemary adds some visual interest as well as lets you know this is a slightly savory cookie as well.
I think these cookies are even better after they sit for a few days. That really makes the flavor more pronounced. I kept mine in the fridge in an airtight container because of the glaze.
If you make these cookies, let me know what you think! And don’t be scared–the savory part really isn’t strong; it just compliments the sweetness and tartiness of the cookie. If you have an herb garden, what do you have to lose? Give them a try…I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. 🙂
- 2 cups Golden Barrel confectioners' sugar
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 Tbsp water (optional)
- In small bowl, mix together confectioners' sugar and lemon juice until combined. Add water to thin glaze one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- Place parchment paper under cooling rack to catch icing that drips down. Using a spoon, pour glaze over cooled cookies, letting excess drip off onto parchment. Sprinkle with chopped rosemary. Let stand on rack 10-15 minutes or until glaze is set. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.
Why do you recommend salted butter verses unsalted butter.
Is parchment required ? What happens if this is not used and the cookies are baked directly in a cookie sheet ?