Orange-rosemary butter cookies

This is your new favorite holiday cookie. I promise you.

It’s for non-bakers who want to making something sweet. I am, for the most part, a non-baker with the exception of pies. But I had to come up with this on a dare.

I’m a member of the Food52 Cookbook Club. Every year, we have a holiday Santa Swap and the organizer dared us to make home-cooked goodies. Well, let’s see. We’re all cooks. I couldn’t see boxing up a jar of spaghetti sauce or hollandaise and expecting it to survive the U.S. Postal Service much less the health department.

So off to the oven I went. I made cheese wafers because what decent Southern woman doesn’t have a cheese wafer recipe up her sleeve? And butter-roasted pecans, a holiday staple at 5117. And these cookies. Plus I added some Nashville treats like Goo-Goo Clusters and Colt’s Bolts, and an Elvis ornament. Thank you very much.

This recipe is from Food Network Magazine. Here’s the recipe. Enjoy.

Orange-Rosemary Butter Cookies

Grated zest of one large orange

2/3 cup granulates sugar

1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 sticks butter at room temperature

1 large egg, separated, plus 1 egg yolk

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons  sanding sugar

Combine the zest, sugars, rosemary and salt in a food processor and process, scraping the bowl occasionally, until the mixture is sandy and turns orange, about 1 minutes. Add the butter and process until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg yolks and process until combined, about one minutes. Be sure to scrape the bowl to incorporate all the yolks.

Divide the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap and roll into uniform logs, each about 10 inches. Wrap and refrigerate for an hour until the dough firms up. Unwrap and form into a smooth cylinder as best you can. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect. Wrap again and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly beat the egg white and brush each log with the white. Pour some sanding sugar (that sugar with larger-then-normal crystals) onto a plate and roll each log in the sugar to coat it as heavily as you can.

Slice one of the logs into 1/3-inch rounds with a sharp knife and arrange two inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until the cookies are golden around the edges. Let them cool for about five minutes and transfer them to a cooling rack. Repeat with the second log of dough.

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