Hello my friends! Today was a perfect, sleepy, peaceful, beautiful snow day!
We knew there was a big storm a-comin’, but the dental school made me so happy by pre-emptively canceling classes and clinic the night before, so Fritz was prepared to sleep in. It was great timing because I am driving the very long trek to my parents’ house tomorrow with my good friend Jen, and the snow stopped in the afternoon–enough time for the plows to go out and do their thang. But today…ahh. Today I got to read (I finished The Help in less than 24 hours), bake (two different things!), get ready for my trip and soon Fritz and I will finish the sixth season of LOST. Now that is a good day.
Even Henry got into the spirit, finishing up a few novels while I baked and Fritz shoveled:
And of course, it isn’t a snow day without hot chocolate. Erin and Bruce introduced us to this delicious Mexican chocolate–and my life has never been the same:
Now for the baking. I made some Earl Grey cookies the year I graduated high school (isn’t it amazing that I remember that year so vividly?), and for some strange reason I woke up this morning craving them. I googled the recipe and found the exact same one from Real Simple that I used way, waay back then.
However, I wanted to mix things up a bit. And since my favorite South African will be here all alone for a long weekend, I thought I’d give him something to remember me by. So instead of Earl Grey, I used…
Rooibos! And they turned out A-mazing.
Rooibos Tea Cookies (adapted from this recipe)
- 2 T rooibos tea (ground–I used tea from four tea bags)
- 1 C whole wheat flour
- 1 C all-purpose flour
- 1/2 C granulated sugar
- 1/2 C confectioner’s sugar
- 1/2 t salt
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 C butter (I only had 1/2 C butter so I had to add 1/2 Smart Balance since we were snowed in–but otherwise I would have used all real butter. Sorry Dad!)
I set up the table to take pictures of the ingredients, but I got too excited and forgot to take a picture before I started tossing ingredients in the mixer. Whoops!
The recipe says to process the tea further, but I like the bits of tea leaves so I decided to leave ’em as is. Put all the dry ingredients into your mixer and blend. Add the vanilla and butter and mix on medium until fully combined (the dough should form one ball). Divide the dough in half and place each half on plastic wrap, roll into a log, and wrap tightly. Put in the refrigerator to chill for at least half an hour (I popped mine into the freezer for the last ten minutes so they’d hold their shape even better during cutting).
Meanwhile, pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking racks with parchment paper and set aside. When the dough has chilled, take one roll at a time, remove from plastic, and cut into pieces, at 1/3″ intervals. Line on a cookie sheet.
Bake the cookies until they are just starting to brown at the edges, about 10-12 minutes on the middle rack. Remove and let cool on the sheets for another five minutes before cooling fully on a cooling rack.
If you eat one straight out of the oven (which, admit it, you will), it will be soft and chewy, but once it cools they are light and crispy. I’m normally heartily in the chewy-cookie camp, but man, these are good. And perfect for dunking into milk, coffee, or (duh) tea.
I want another one right now.
Fritz made me promise to leave all of them here when I leave tomorrow, but I may have to make another batch just for my family to enjoy.
Go. Go and make these right this second. And feel free to use another kind of tea–I was thinking chamomile might be my next try for a sleepytime cookie.