Rosemary-Orange Shortbread Cookies

"These caught my eye as a light crisp side on a cheese & fruit platter, with an orange suffused mascarpone or as a garnish to a panna cotta dessert during the holidays. Elegante! Found in The Washington Post who got it from cookbook author Nancy Baggett. They note if you have cooked with fresh rosemary before, you might suspect that the amount called for here is too much. That quantity might overpower a soup or stew, but rosemary is much milder in baked goods. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 1 month. ***note - dough needs some chill time so this is ideal for make, chill/freeze & bake when you have time***"
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Ready In:
1hr 10mins
45-55 cookies


  • 12 cup sugar
  • 2 12 tablespoons rosemary, finely chopped fresh (remove the coarse stems)
  • 1 orange, grated zest (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 18 teaspoon salt
  • 2 14 cups flour, plus more if needed
  • 8 ounces unsalted butter, very cold, cut into pats (2 sticks)
  • 2 tablespoons orangecello liqueur, plus more if needed (orange juice OK too)


  • In a food processor, process the sugar, rosemary, zest and salt for several minutes, until the sugar has colored and the rosemary is chopped very fine. Add the flour, scraping up the contents at the bottom of the bowl to blend the mixture evenly. Sprinkle the butter over the mixture. Process in pulses until no bits of butter are visible; the dough should not quite be clumping or coming together. Drizzle the Orangecello or orange juice over the mixture. Process using 10 to 15 one-second pulses; stop and stir to scrape up and incorporate the mixture on the bottom as necessary. Stop processing as soon as the mixture begins to come together.
  • Turn out the dough onto a large sheet of baking parchment or wax paper. Gently knead it just until evenly blended and cohesive. If it is slightly dry or crumbly, gradually knead in 1 or 2 more teaspoons of Orangecello; if it is soft, sprinkle over a tablespoon or so of flour and knead in until slightly firmer.
  • Divide the dough into thirds. Roll out each portion between sheets of baking parchment or wax paper to a round measuring a generous 1/8-inch thick; be sure the thickness is uniform. Check the undersides and smooth out any wrinkles. Stack the dough portions (paper attached) on a tray or baking sheet. Freeze for at least 10 minutes and up to 24 hours. If the frozen dough is hard, let it warm up and soften just slightly before using.
  • When ready to bake, place a rack in the middle third of the oven; preheat to 350 degrees. Line several baking sheets with baking parchment, or spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Working with one dough portion and keeping the others chilled, peel off one of the sheets of paper, then pat it back into place. Invert the dough, then peel off and discard the second sheet. Using a 2 1/2- to 2 3/4-inch (or similar) round or scalloped cutter, cut out the cookies. Use a spatula to transfer them to the lined baking sheets, spacing them about 1 1/2 inches apart. If the dough becomes too soft to work with, return it to the freezer until it firms up, then continue. Repeat the process with the other portions of dough. Combine the dough scraps and continue rolling, chilling and cutting out until it is all used.
  • Bake one sheet at a time on the middle rack for 5 minutes. Rotate the sheet from front to back and bake for 3 to 5 minutes or until the cookies are just faintly rimmed with brown; watch carefully, as they brown rapidly near the end of baking. Let the pans cool on wire racks for about 3 minutes, until the cookies firm up, then use a wide spatula to gently transfer the cookies to racks. Cool completely.

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<p>First about Buster: Buster moved onto whatever comes next on February 26, 2008. He was just shy of five years old. I miss him terribly. <br />He came into our lives when he ran out in front of my car late one night as I was driving home. A just under 4 pound ball of kitten fluff, complete with an ostrich boa tail that stayed straight up as he assessed his new domain. He became a 19 pound longhaired beast who guarded our house (he followed any new guests or servicepeople the entire time they are on the property) &amp; even killed copperheads (among other things with his hunting buddy, Fergus the short-tailed)! Friends never saw his formidible side as he smiled at them &amp; uttered the most incongruent kitten-like mews as he threaded legs! He liked to ride in the car &amp; came to the beach. <br />There are Buster-approved recipes in my offerings - however, HE decided which he wanted to consider - Buster demonstrated he liked pumpkin anything - ALOT -LOL!!! <br /> <br />Copperhead count 2006 - Buster 2 <br /> (10 inchers w/yellow tails) <br /> 2007 - Buster &amp; Roxie 1 <br /> (a 24 incher!) <br />Buster woken from beauty sleep - <br /> <br />Big whiskers - <br /> <br /> <br />For those of you who gave kind condolences - thank you so very much. <br /> <br /> <br /> <br />I love to cook &amp; incorporate techniques from Southern/Mid Atlantic roots (grits, eastern NC BBQ shoulders, Brunswick stew, steamed crabs &amp; shrimp &amp; shellfish, hushpuppies, cornbread, greens, shad roe, scrapple) with Pacific Rim foods &amp; techniques aquired while living in Pacific Northwest, fish &amp; game recipes learned while living in Rocky Mountain region &amp; foods/techniques learned travelling to the Big Island &amp; up into BC &amp; Alberta &amp; into the Caribbean. The Middle Eastern/African likes I have are remnants of my parents who lived for many years in North Africa &amp; Mediterranean before I was thought of. Makes for wide open cooking! <br /> <br />Since moving back east we try to go annually in the deep winter to Montreal (Old Montreal auberges &amp; La Reine) &amp; Quebec City (Winter Carnival &amp; Chateau Frontenac)- for unctuous foie gras &amp; real cheeses, French &amp; Canadian meals prepared &amp; served exquisitely, fantastic music &amp; wonderful people - with the cold helping burn off some of the calories! <br /> <br />I love putting in our aluminum jonboat &amp; heading across the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) to the barrier islands for foraging &amp; exploring! Bodysurfing is a lifelong sport for me - one that a person's body never seems to forget how to do, once the knack is learned (thank goodness!) <br /> <br />I especially miss cool summers &amp; foggy/drizzly days &amp; fall mushroom foraging/anytime of year hot springing in WA, OR, MT, ID, BC &amp; Alberta.</p>
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