Shortbread is a classic favorite and so versatile. I like the combination of orange and thyme flavors in savory dishes, so I thought I'd try them together in a sweet. Buttery, crispy, slightly sweet, with a bit of citrus and a hint of thyme, these are wonderful cookies to accompany afternoon tea. Or morning coffee.
Orange Thyme Shortbread
1 cup of butter, room temperature
3/4 cup icing sugar
1 Tablespoon fresh orange zest
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, or 1 teaspoon dried
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
In a mixer or food processor, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Add the icing sugar and beat well. Add the orange zest, thyme leaves, flour and cornstarch until well incorporated. Form the dough into a ball, wrap in waxed paper and chill for about 20 minutes.
Roll dough, between parchment paper sheets, or on a floured surface, to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with a floured cutter and place on lined baking sheet. Bake at 300 degrees for 18 minutes or until light golden brown.
Cool on baking sheet for a few minutes, then remove to a cooling rack. Makes about 36 2-1/2 inch cookies.
Note: For a little more savoriness, sprinkle the tops of the cookies with fleur de sel or fine sea salt. I did that to a few of them, and they are definitely my favorites.