Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tea and cookies

Invite a friend for tea; sit on your deck or balcony and watch the honeyed late-afternoon autumn light. Reconnect, pause, breathe, commune.

Here is a delicious, easy cookie for your tea; you can make the dough up to two months in advance, wrap it, and store it in the freezer, or store in your fridge for 5 days.

When she arrives, the aroma of fresh butter cookies will wrap her in pleasure.

There will be enough left to delight children coming home from school or anyone else you see afte
r 5:00 pm..

Butter Cookies

(From: Gourmet Magazine, February 1999)
Yield: Makes about 60 small cookies or 30 larger ones


Ingredients
:
2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 teaspoon real vanilla extract

Optional: orange or lemon zest


Preparation
:
Into a bowl, sift together flour, salt, and baking powder. In a large bowl with an electric mixer beat butter until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until mixture is light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and beat until combined well. Gradually add flour mixture, beating until mixture just forms a dough.


Divide dough between 2 large sheets of wax paper and form each half into a 10- x 1 1/2-inch log, wrapping it in wax paper. Chill logs until firm, at least 4 hours, and up to 5 days. Dough may be frozen, wrapped in foil, 2 months. Let dough soften slightly before cutting.

To bake:
Preheat oven to 375°F. and lightly butter a baking sheet.
Cut dough into 1/8-inch-thick slices and arrange slices about 1/2 inch apart on baking sheet. Bake cookies in batches in middle of oven until golden around edges, 10 to 12 minutes, and transfer with a metal spatula to a rack to cool.

Cookies may be kept in an airtight container at room temperature 5 days.

5 comments:

Julianne said...

Tea is one of my most cherished rituals. I do have tea with my friends, or alone almost every afternoon. I will have to try the cookie recipe. It sounds delicious. As you can see on my blog, I have links to Specialteas and Harney and Sons.

Here is a link my friend just sent me that you might like.

http://gracioustea.blogspot.com/

Anjela said...

This is right up my alley. I am addicted to the practice of tea/s
Thanks so much for posting my favourite topic:)
I love going home and seeing a perpetual kettle boiling. It signifies so much more than a pot of tea. A total reconnection with friends and family. I like the recipe you posted. So simple yet perfect. Have you tried the Lady Grey tea-if you like Earl Grey, Lady Grey is a bit less strong in Bergamot. When I first met my ex husband and he told me didn't drink tea. He didn't like tea. I overlooked it. But it isn't so much the tea....is it? It is more about communion.

Thanks!

Toby Wollin said...

We spent three weeks in the UK in August and I got quite invested in having tea and 'something'. It was a great energizer and frankly seemed to keep me from indulging too much at dinner..I ended up losing five pounds when I was over there(or course, it had nothing whatsoever to do with all the walking, climbing church stairs, hiking etc. that we did..nothing at all.)

Duchesse said...

Thanks for these tea suggestions. Scones are nice too, or little sandwiches. Tea treats are the best! Toby has proven my theory, what is eaten at tea does not 'count'.

La Belette Rouge said...

My He-weasel LOVES butter cookies. I am printing and saving your lovely recipe and will make them on a day when it is not too hot to bake.

I am more of a coffee gal, but you paint such a beautiful word picture that I am longing for an afternoon tea with a girlfriend.