I don’t buy cookies. Really, it’s just something that I don’t do. I mean – don’t get me wrong here – I have obviously purchased some at one point in time or another, but it’s very much out of character for me to do so.
So when my wife picked up a cookie to nibble on while at a local café, l didn’t quite understand it. Had she grabbed a ham and cheese croissant, or a ham and cheese biscuit, or…what other baked goods include ham and cheese…? Anyways, you get the point: savoury baking is my go to. After that, I absolutely lemon and cherry Danishes, then a good bar or square, possibly a raisin-less tart of some sort, then – eventually – we arrive at cookies. Obviously I eat them, and enjoy eating them, but they’re never my top choice, my top craving.
These cookies, however, are a game changer. Of course I had to try a little bit of my wife’s cookie…which turned into a bigger piece…which turned into me heading over to the counter to purchase my own. After scarfing down my own snickerdoodle, I still wasn’t satisfied; I needed to be able to recreate these cookies myself. Thankfully, my wife knows the cafe’s owner (though I’m sure she would have told us regardless), et voila: I now have the recipe (and by proxy, so do you!).
I should probably get to the details now, though. The recipe is an adaptation of Smitten Kitchen’s Snickerdoodles, where you essentially skip the cinnamon/sugar topping (which I think is what technically makes a snickerdoodle, well, a snickerdoodle), bake Earl Grey tea leaves into the cookies, and top with an icing made with actual brewed tea. As mentioned, the idea is by no means my own; all that I personally figured out was the amount of tea to bake into the cookies, and the proportions for the icing.
So, without further adieu (aside from a special thanks to Kristina over at Oldhand Coffee in Abbotsford, B.C., for telling me her cinnamon-less snickerdoodle secrets), here’s the recipe:
Earl Grey Snickerdoodles
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. cream of tartar
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 3 Tazo-brand Earl Grey teabags
- 3/4 cup icing sugar, plus extra as needed
- Hot water, for brewing tea
- Grind two packets (approx. 1 tbsp.) worth of the Earl Grey tea leaves in a pestle and mortar, then pour through a sieve and discard any bits too big to pass through.
- Prepare the dry ingredients by sifting together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, salt, and the tea leaves, then set aside.
- In a stand mixer with paddle attachment (set to medium speed), cream the butter and granulated sugar.
- Add the eggs and continue to beat to combine.
- Add in the dry ingredients and continue to mix (now on low-medium) until well-incorporated.
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
- Pre-heat your oven to 400°F.
- Line some cookie sheets with silicone baking sheets or wax paper. Using a medium-sized ice cream scoop, form roughly golf ball-sized balls of dough and place them approximately 2 inches apart on your prepared cookie sheets. Using the bottom of a flat glass, press down on the cookies slightly. (Though cookie sheets and ovens vary, I recommend using very sturdy cooking sheets, and placing your rack on your oven’s second-highest level.)
- Place the cookies in the oven and bake for 10-11 minutes. Only the bottoms should show any real change in colour, browning slightly. As you’ll need probably 3 cookie sheets, you may have to bake in batches.
- Remove the cookie sheet(s) from the oven and transfer the sheets to a wire rack to cool for about 5 minutes. After this time, you can transfer the cookies directly to the rack.
- While the cookies are cooling, make the icing. With your third teabag, brew a cup of tea. Take 2 tbsp. of this tea and add it to a small bowl containing the icing sugar. Stir to combine, adding extra sugar if the icing is too runny, or extra tea if not smooth enough.
- When the cookies are cooled, drizzle them with the icing (or pipe over the cookies, if desired).
Makes about 20 large cookies
As I tend to do, I’m sharing this recipe over at Angie’s Fiesta Friday. If you have yet to take the time to check out her blog, perhaps now is the time you should change that. She recently posted a recipe for a French toast casserole that looks quite amazing. In addition to Angie, this week’s cohosts are Hilda @ Along the Grapevine (her Canada Goose tamales look both impressive and tasty) and Mila @ Milk and Bun (the mini quiches she posted recently look amazing!). Do yourself a favour and check out all three of their blogs for some great cooking ideas.