Day 4 of the Baker’s Dozen Cookie Challenge and it is Sun-dried Tomato and Rosemary Shortbread Cookies. A mixture of savory ingredients in a sweet cookie, uses some of the beautiful Sicilian sun-dried cherry tomatoes we brought back from Italy. The tomatoes are more like candy because they are so sweet and taste of the sunlight and warm days of Italy.
I found the recipe for these cookies on Table Matters. It was such an unusual combination of ingredients that I had to give it a try. I have to admit at first bite, I almost tossed them all into the trash but as I kept eating I realized the wonderful flavors coming through. It was the almond extract in the dough with savory ingredients that threw me but now that I’ve tried it, I do like it.
I switched in the ingredients I had on hand so ended up using fresh rosemary and sunflower seeds in the place of the pine nuts. I also used my gluten-free flour, still working away at that 5-pound bag of it. And while I do like the cookie as it stands, I think that next time (yes, there will be a next time), I will cut the amount of sugar, add olive oil in the place of the butter and sprinkle with a coarse sea salt, making these a more savory cookie than sweet. After all, not every cookie has to be sweet!
If you’re making them, make sure you plan ahead because they do require a stint of about an hour in the fridge for chilling. I attempted the 20 minute mark as suggested by the original recipe but had to put them back in. If you want to rush them, 20 minutes in the freezer would probably work out beautifully.
Overall, a decent cookie to make. Very unusual and not the norm but I liked them. Hubby and one of my gluten-free friends liked them. The other did not but he also does not like cookies with savory ingredients in them. For me, I want them to be more savory, so take your pick and make them sweet or make them savory. I do believe you will like them either way.
Sun-dried Tomato and Rosemary Shortbread Cookies
1 cup gluten-free flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
8 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
1 tsp. almond extract
2 Tbsp. water
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, diced
2 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped (or herb of your choice)
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, roasted
1/4 cup Pecorino Romano cheese, finely grated
Sift together the flour and cornstarch in a large bowl.
Using a medium-sized bowl, combine the sugar, almond extract, water and butter until well mixed.
With your hands or a fork or pastry cutter, combine the butter/sugar mixture with the flour. Add the dried tomatoes, rosemary and nuts to the dough, mixing, forming into a ball, just until combined. Dough will be slightly crumbly.
Cover the dough ball with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour. You can speed up this process by popping the dough into the freezer for about 20 minutes. Do not freeze solid.
Preheat the oven to 325° F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to 1/4 inch thick. Cut the dough into circles and place the cookies on the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 17-18 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Do not overbake or the cookies will become hard and brittle.
Remove from sheets to a wire rack to cool.
More wonderful shortbread cookie recipes for you to try: